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The Awful Disclosures of Maria Monk

2.63 of 5 stars 2.63  ·  rating details  ·  46 ratings  ·  10 reviews
"I cannot banish the scenes and characters of this book from my memory. To me it can never appear like an amusing fable, or lose its interest and importance. The story is one which is continually before me, and must return fresh to my mind with painful emotions as long as I live..."
Paperback, 1851, 232 pages
Published October 19th 2006 by Book Jungle (first published January 1836)
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There are certain fascinating aspects about this book: It claims to be the true account of a young Protestant Canadian woman who voluntarily becomes a Catholic nun. Once in the convent, she discovers that the nuns are regularly raped by the priests of the monastery nearby, and that all the illegitimate babies are baptized and killed right after their birth before they are thrown into a sort of dump. There is of course also a lot of torture and physical punishment going on...
This is, however, no
Aug 24, 2008 Ozread rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
Recommended to Ozread by: a friend
I was given this to read as it was supposed to be a chronicle of horrific torture visited upon a woman in a Catholic convent. I looked into it after reading it and discovered it is another fraud memoir that was publicly found out not long after it was published. This woman's only contact with the Catholic Church was during a stay in a mental asylum her mother committed her to after she sustained a head injury that affected her mental stability. She left the asylum and at the age of 18, became in ...more
There are many problems with this story, and this edition. Firstly, it is important for the reader to know that this "disclosure" is hoax that was discredited shortly after its original publication in 1836. Secondly, despite the obvious intent of the publishers of this relatively recent edition to market the text as a salacious expose, sex is only referred to in the most Victorian Christian manner--purely euphemistically. Descriptions are inflamatory yet vague in the extreme--to the point that e ...more
Ridiculous set of 19th C. anti-Jesuit literature (read it in a digital trio with 'Awful Disclosures...', 'Startling Mysteries...', and 'Six Months in a Convent'). Two of these stories purport to be "true confessions" of former nuns; the third is by a Protestant minister who straight-up admits his story is fiction, but should be treated as fact because he's pretty sure something like it has totally probably happened.

It's laughable to think there was a time when people would read this sort of bla
Aug 22, 2011 Alex marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
There was a famous expose of life inside convents in the 18th century, I think - aside from The Nun, that is - anyway, I don't think this is it. But check out that cover! Whee!

ETA: Okay, fine, I looked this up. The expose is Six Months in a Convent: The Narrative of Rebecca Theresa Reed (1835), which was neither as sensational as this thing nor as patently made up. Both works were said to be influenced by The Nun and by (inside, I jump and clap my hands every time this book comes up) The Monk.

Biography of nun who goes through awful stuff at convent. Good information of how a cult might operate. Prefer stuff written like fiction though. This is fiction but originally published as true by protestants trying to smear catholics.
Bryan Taylor
Maria Monk was famous in her time after writing this book about nuns being sexually exploited in Montreal by priests. Of course, critics who want to be picky point out that most of her facts were wrong and she spent time in a mental institutions and most of the book was probably ghost written by an anti-Catholic legal guardian, William K. Hoyte, but taken as fiction, the book is lots of fun, and a classic of its time.
Lof cruelty and old-school penance type stuff like flagellation. Actually, come to think of it the last book I read: Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague by Geraldine Brooks, had flagellation in it, and only the other day I watched The Da Vinci Code with the charming mortification obsessed albino....hmmm what is the universe telling me?? On second thoughts I don't want to know!

Amal El-Mohtar
Read for the Making Settler-Modernities course. It sure was something. By which I mean it read like fanfic of The Monk, which was, itself, 19-year-old Lewis' id-powered NaNoWriMo attempt, so, you know. Wacky.
John Witte
I mean, this book is mean spirited and shitty, but I like it anyway.
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