“When 33-year-old Catherine Benincasa lay dying of starvation, her final words were of triumph; she had done this to herself, on purpose, for God. She died in 1380, following years of self-inflicted torture, defying the entreaties of her fellow clergy to eat the food placed in front of her. She had long believed herself to be following the direct orders of God, including the direction to hate her mortal body and to neuter all of her bodily impulses. Decades later, she was canonized as Saint Catherine of Siena, her suffering recast as martyrdom, and her writings on self-denial and starvation inspired future generations of young women of faith to starve themselves in emulation of her. Her self-hatred is anathema to 21st-century ideals of sepia-tinted self-actualization, but the core tenet, that women can harness power by conquering their bodies, is identical.”

I wrote about St. Catherine of Siena for Bitch magazine! Here’s the link!¬†Subscribe to the magazine while you’re at it!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s