Digging out some emotional roots of British anti-Catholicism

This project is concerned with the affective language used in English-language reports of the persecution of Waldensians in the later seventeenth century and how the rhetoric within these reports helped shape notions of British Protestant identity and community. It also explores the methodological legitimacy of reading confessional geographic maps in a way that he believes can justifiably be defined as affective cartography.

Digging out some emotional roots of British anti-Catholicism

“Religion in tears,” Attr. to Chr. de Pas (see Frederik Muller, Additions), Emotions. See http://emotions.arts.uwa.edu.au/wiki/items/show/172.

This project investigates how a politically top-down intolerant attitude towards Catholics came to spread among the English 'mobs', playing on their deep-seated fears and inherent xenophobia, to the point that when Parliament passed a Catholic Relief Act in 1778, the ensuing protest led to the most violent urban riots in British history. It is no accident that the adjective most commonly applied to Catholics was 'outlandish', which should be understood quite literally as meaning 'foreign'. More specifically this work will focus initially on the 'popular' reception in England of a number of emotive and personalized accounts of the Catholic persecution of the Waldensians in the 1680s (Waldensianism was considered the only 'heresy' of the twelfth century to survive in unbroken continuity into the sixteenth century to link hands with the Protestant Reformation). It is also worth recalling that Catholics and Protestants generally lived on good terms in their local communities in early modern England. They shared the same lifestyle and interests and moved in the same social circles. In times of crisis, many Protestants actively helped their Catholic neighbours and friends to evade the effects of the law or to escape the mob's fury. Competing, lacerating affective bonds and contradictory values were at stake here. They too deserve the attention of social historians of emotions.

Emotions Blog Post

Through Your Eyes: Emotions and Cultures
Affective Classroom Encounters
Conflicting Emotions in (early modern) Religion
"I feel. Therefore I am."

Emotions Wiki Entries

The emotions thermometer of William Hogarth
Religion in tears

Relevant Publications

Tarantino, G. 'Religion and Spirituality'. In A Cultural History of the Emotions in the Baroque and Enlightenment Age (1600–1780), edited by K. Barclay and C. Walker (London: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2019), pp. 35–51, 177.
Tarantino, G. 'Tolerance'. In Early Modern Emotions: An Introduction, edited by S. Broomhall (London: Routledge, 2017), pp. 284–87.
Tarantino, G. 'Gli eccidi valdesi nella propaganda antigiacobita di Gilbert Burnet e John Lockman'. Bollettino Società Studi Valdesi 215 (2014): 73–102.
Tarantino, G. 'Mapping Religion (and Emotions) in the Protestant Valleys of Piedmont'. ASDIWAL: Revue Genevoise d’Anthropologie et d’Histoire des Religions 9 (2014): 91–105.

Tarantino, G. 'Enlightenment'. In The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Religion, edited by S. Goetz and C. Taliaferro (Wiley, exp. 2019).
Tarantino, G. 'Radical Writing'. In The Oxford Handbook of English Prose, 1640–1714, edited by N. McDowell and H. Power (Oxford University Press, exp. 2019).
Tarantino, G. and C. Zika, eds. Feeling Exclusion in Early Modern Europe (Routledge, exp. 2019).
Tarantino, G. and K. M. Stünkel, eds. 'Holy Affections and Religious Entanglements in Early Modern Europe: Contacts, Polemics, and Representations', special issue, Entangled Religions. In preparation.