Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Nun” as Want to Read:
The Nun
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Nun

3.67  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,462 Ratings  ·  186 Reviews

Diderot's The Nun (La Religieuse) is the seemingly true story of a young girl forced by her parents to enter a convent and take holy orders. A novel mingling mysticism, madness, sadistic cruelty and nascent sexuality, it gives a scathing insight into the effects of forced vocations and the unnatural life of the convent. A succès de scandale at the end of the eighteenth cen

...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1792)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Nun, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Nun

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Lynne King
“So you’re not going to come to see me anymore?”
“No, dear Mother.”
“And you won’t let me come and see you in your cell anymore?”
“No, dear Mother.”
“Will you refuse my caresses?”
“It will be very difficult for me to do so, for I was born affectionate and I like being caressed, but I must. I’ve promised my confessor and I made a vow before the altar.”

Looking at the above, is that the normal conversation between a nun and her mother superior? Perhaps it was at that particular time?

On that note, where
...more
MJ Nicholls
I’m applying for positions of paid work at the moment (known as a “job”—so I’m told), and after about a month of no replies I’m about ready to sign up for the convent. I would love to be a nun! Provided I had computer and broadband access, and was permitted to read any book I so pleased, I’d put on my habit and sing the sacraments! Unfortunately all the nun positions are filled at the moment, despite me faking three months nunning experience on my CV. (I’m considering changing the name on my CV ...more
Anthony Vacca
Wowzers! how I loved this book. At face value, this is a slim and straight-forward epistolary novel about a young woman who is forced into covenant life by her awful, self-absorbed parents, who then proceeds to stand firm to her ideals as she is antagonized by sadistic, power-hungry hypocrites and mentally disturbed sex fiends. While Diderot was very much an atheist, he does a praiseworthy turn here giving voice to a sincerely religious narrator that has no desire to live the claustrophobic and ...more
Jonfaith
Jan 07, 2014 Jonfaith rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: stevenmoore
Man was born to live with his fellow human beings. Separate him, isolate him, his character will go bad, a thousand ridiculous affects will invade his heart, extravagant thoughts will germinate in his brain, like thorns in an uncultivated land.

Given the untimely arrival of our Arctic Vortex, it is fitting that The Nun shudders with a frozen despair. Bone chilling mornings are well suited for such guided tours of the dark side. Abandon your preconceptions of the Enlightenment and moral cautionary
...more
knig
Jan 05, 2012 knig rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to knig by: sourced from MJ
Shelves: whatthe-hell
This went down in one sitting: less a tribute to the literary merits of this novel and more an expose of my coarse, voyeuristic nature. Of the very base, chav chasing, track suit wearing, Vicky Pollard yeah but no but yeah variety where I settle my newly acquired Christmas overhang on the settee, spread out the fries and Baconnaise washed down with a spot of bitter shandy and munch my way through this epic saga of nuns being very, very naughty. In France. And, lets face it, nobody does naughty l ...more
Rowena
Feb 06, 2013 Rowena rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
This is an interesting novella, written in the form of a letter, by a nun to someone she hopes will help her break the vows which she took by force.

The young French girl, Suzanne, is a victim of circumstances, hated by her family through no fault of her own, and forced to enter a convent. She takes the orders against her wishes although she realizes she has no vocation.

At the convent she falls into the bad books of the Mother Superior and is abused horrifically, sadistically even. Some of the me
...more
Joselito Honestly and Brilliantly

A novel about nun-and-nun lesbian love. In a broader context, about what happens when piety is imposed against one's free will. From his personal experience, Denis Diderot knew it is tragic. His own sister, forced into an Ursuline convent, lost her mind and died there, insane. He himself was once locked up in a monastery by his own father who had wanted him to become a priest. He escaped and instead married his Nanette.

This is an 18th century novel and when it was written by this Frenchman Dider
...more
K.D. Absolutely
Jul 28, 2010 K.D. Absolutely rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (2006-2010)
Shelves: classics, 1001-core
Funny classic novel about a nun! This novel was originally written as a joke! And a joke it should be read and enjoyed!

La Religieuse (The Nun) is an 18th century French novel, by Denis Diderot. Completed in c. 1780, the work, however, wasn't published until 1796, after Diderot's death. Diderot wrote a letter to his retired companion Marquis de Croismare to entice him to retreat back to Paris. The letter was supposed to be from a nun incarcerated in a convent asking Croismare to save her. Many o
...more
mai ahmd
Dec 16, 2011 mai ahmd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: روايات
من الروايات الكلاسيكية الجميلة والتي غفل عنها القارىء العربي بسبب عدم ترجمتها لذلك أوجه تحية لمشروع كلمة للترجمة على مبادرتها الجليلة في أحياء هذا الكتاب وإخراجه للنور .. تدور فكرة الرواية حول راهبة أدخلت قسرا للدير وقدمت نذورها دون رغبة في ذلك مما جعلها تعاني الأمرين لفقدانها حريتها حيث اقترنت لديها فكرة الإنضمام للدير بفكرة العبودية فحاربت بشتى الطرق للحصول على حريتها ، احتقرت تلك الغباوة السعيدة التي تظهر بها زميلاتها والتي يتفاخرن بها لنيل الرضا واعتبرتها تفاهات لايمكن أن تقوم بها ، هذا الإخ ...more
عمر عبدالفتاح
عجيب جدا !
كيف يمكن أن يوجد كل هذا الشر في مكان، يفترض أنه للعبادة ونقاء الروح
بل كيف يمكن أن تحمل كل هذا الشر والانحراف الأخلاقي والفكري وسوء الطويّة أنفساً يفترض أنها نذرت حالها للطاعة والعفّة والفقر (كما يقولون) !

سوزان سيمونان فتاة نقية متصالحة مع نفسها متسامحة مع غيرها (كما أحب أن أصفها)
أرسلها والداها إلي الدير رغما عنها -فهي لا تميل لحياة الرهبنة (بتاتا)- ، لتكتشف فيما بعد أن هذا العمل كان نتاج خطيئة ارتكبتها والدتها وتحاول أن تكفر عنها عن طريق ابنتها لتستقر الأسرة -لأن أحدا من الأسرة لا يعلم
...more
ايمان
Apr 04, 2012 ايمان rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
خشيت لمدة طويلة اقتحام عالم ديدرو فكما اعلم انه عالم موسوعي فهالني ان اقتحم روايتاه التي قد تكون مغرقة في مفردات غريبة و صعبة..الترجمة العربية شجعتني و لم اندم وروز مخلوف ابدعت بصدق في الترجمة ..الرواية بدأت برسالة مطولة لراهبة تعيش الأمرين بين عائلة قتلتها الاسرار ففضلت الأم تقديم سوزان كقربان للدير علها تكفر عن خطيئتها و بين ثلاث اديرة كل منها كانت له عذاباته التي تنسيها في سابقاتها..سوزان الفتاة المتصالحة مع ذاتها رغم صغر سنها البريئة و التي تعرف بالضبط ما الذي تستطيع تقديمه لله و لنفسها حارب ...more
Luís Blue Yorkie
'Verbatim' of myself:

I had to read the book by leisurely form, fearing - and at the same time being unable to avoid - a deep psychological identification with the magnificent protagonist.

I believe, however, that I'll be late to avoid identification: I already feel the horrors experienced by Sister Maria Susana as if they were mine, that hurts my soul: I am religious, hypocrisies and institutional injustices affecting me closely. I can not help!

While follow later in this extreme dearth of plot im
...more
Alex
Doesn't get into the hot girl-on-girl action 'til like halfway through the book, and then it's super not hot. If you're looking for hot 18th-century girl on girl action, you gotta go with Fanny Hill.

It's pleasant and enjoyable to read. I think one problem with The Nun is that I read it right after The Monk, which is way awesomer. If you're only going to read one blasphemous 18th-century lit book this ear, it has to be The Monk, and you can put that on your movie posters.

So, yeah, there you go.
...more
Jose lana
Feb 03, 2016 Jose lana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, based-rality
We have to see The Nun in its historical context in the Enlightement age,Denis Diderot a main autor in this time,a enciclopedist that as others put in question allstablished dogmas and ideas.

This novel is a hard critic to the life in the totally closed convents and the abuse of to forcé Young girls to be nuns closed all hers life against hers will,also is a critic to the religious fanatism and intolerance yet not the own christyan creences,only to part of the catholic stablishment.

The novel tell
...more
Rosa Ramôa
Jan 29, 2015 Rosa Ramôa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Forçar vocações é anti natural...
سمارا البياتي
رواية فرنسية حقيقية لراهبة أُجبرت على الالتحاق بالدير ونذر حياتها للرهبنة دون إرادة منها فأصبحت قصتها الأليمة حديث الصالونات الآدبية طوال عام 1758.

من أروع كتابات ديدرو الذي كان من أبرز مفكري فرنسا وفلاسفتها ومعاصرآ لجان جاك روسو وأقرب أصدقائه، من مؤلفاته حلي فاضحة التي تم بيعها في الخفاء ورسالة عن العميان التي سجن بسببها في دونجون ثم قصر فنسين.

نشرت الرواية بعد موته بستة عشر عامآ في عهد الثورة الفرنسية ثم أحرقت علننآ بناءآ على أمر من محكمة السين.

الرواية هي يوميات مخلوقة بريئة جميلة مرهفة وغاية في
...more
Pierre E. Loignon
Diderot, c’est pour moi l’écrivain aventurier, l’écrivain de la liberté pure, toujours en mouvement, toujours vif et brillant. Il joue dans l’écriture avec une liberté admirable, toujours rempli de surprises, il aborde tout avec la même légèreté triomphante.
Il va de soi qu’un individu de ce type est très difficile à saisir car sa liberté l’entraîne toujours à explorer de nouvelles possibilités d’existences. Il a ainsi la réputation d’avoir été un matérialiste athée alors qu’il me paraît générale
...more
Ryan Lieske
Aug 09, 2011 Ryan Lieske rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Published over two hundred years ago, I can only imagine what kind of uproar and scandal it must've caused, because it's still pretty caustic and racy, even by today's standards. Telling the sad story of a young woman forced into a convent, Diderot takes aim at organized religion and the social stigmas of his time. The violence, both physical and emotional, is brutal. And Diderot doesn't shy away from frank depictions of lesbianism. While on the surface the book is certainly aiming to shock, the ...more
El
Dec 18, 2008 El rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to El by: 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (198/1001)
This deserves a good ol' fashioned, "Dirty!"

This practical-joke-turned-novel is an exceptionally accessible eighteenth-century novel about a young woman, a product of her mother's infidelity, who is forced into a convent. The overwhelming descriptions of her time spent in the convent with the other nuns is enough to turn one from Christianity, so powerful are the images of sadistic behavior. Quite racy for being written in 1760.

I always knew I would make a really bad nun. But it was Diderot who
...more
Aljoharah Alobaikan
الراهبه روايه فرنسية من الادب العالمي الكلاسيكي
كتبت عام م ونشرت عام اي بعد وفاة كاتبها دني ديدرو
هي مذكرات لراهبه صغيرة السن اجبرت على دخول الدير وعلى الرهبنه لادري هل هي روايه تحكي قصة واقعيه ام انها مجرد تصور واقعي لما يحدث فيدور الرهبنه
تحدث الكاتب عن محاولات الراهبه للتخلص والخروج من الدير حيث ان القوانين الدينيه تمنع الرجوع عن قرار الرهبنه اذا اقسم ونذر الشخص نفسه للرب فيمنع عودته للجياة العاديه
الروايه وصفت بشكل دقيق مايحصل خلف الاسوار وكيف يتم تعذيب من يخالف القوانين بشكل لايتخيله عقل
روايه
...more
Lukas Evan
Nov 14, 2015 Lukas Evan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If this were called "Naughty Nuns" more people would read it. This might be the first nunsploitation work.
Bob
Dec 07, 2015 Bob rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Best known in his lifetime for The Encyclopedia and his philosophy, Diderot's novels were mostly privately circulated for fear of earning any more prison time than he already had, but were published to great acclaim during and after the French Revolution.
Although Diderot moved from Deism to atheism, "The Nun" is not quite an attack on religious belief and although generally anti-clerical, it is most specifically about the convent system in France and, generally, the right to self-determination.
...more
سوسن الجبري
النهاية مستفرة :P
تبا
Monty Milne
I suspect one advantage I have over most readers of this book is that I have actually been sexually assaulted by a nun - though I hasten to add I was not a youth at the time, and my main reaction was amusement rather than horror - as it happens, the circumstances would not have been out of place in an 18th century novel (she got into bed with me in a Gothic mansion inhabited by a mutual friend who was a Roman Catholic priest, and I had taken so much Green Chartreuse that I was scarcely aware of ...more
Raúl
Oct 01, 2015 Raúl rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
'En verdad, solo vivía porque ellas deseaban mi muerte. El encarnizamiento en hacer el mal, en atormentar, se cansa en el mundo; pero no en los claustros.'

Segunda vez que me leo esta novela, devorada de un tirón en un solo día, sin poder dormir hasta terminarla. Con ella no puedo simular ser objetivo, pues mueve a la emoción y a la denuncia a través de la empatía. 'La religiosa' fue una obra imprescindible y muy necesaria en el momento de su publicación, pero no ha envejecido nada en su grito de
...more
theduckthief
Nov 08, 2009 theduckthief rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
"It was then that I felt the superiority of the Christian faith over all the other religions of the world; what profound wisdom there was in what blind philosophy calls the folly of the cross." - page 82

Suzanne Simonin is a simple French girl who finds herself packaged off to become a nun due to circumstances beyond her control. Suzanne happens to be the product of an affair and her mother decides Suzanne has to make up for those sins. As well, her parents and step-sisters are concerned about fa
...more
Vlasta
Feb 10, 2016 Vlasta rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Moc pěkná kniha. Skvělý, smutný, dojemný příběh. Jedna z nejdojemnějších knih, co jsem kdy četla a navíc knížka, která v sobě neukrývá žádný milostný románek. (Nenechte se zmást úryvkem na přebalu ;)) Myslela jsem, že mě konec rozbrečí a i když nerozbrečel, zanechal ve mně takový zvláštní pocit a musím o osudu jeptišky Zuzany, o závěru i průběhu knihy a otázce spisovatelům na samém konci uvažovat. Brzy napíšu recenzi. :)
Mona
الرواية التي لفت حبل البؤس حول رقبتي وأرخته في نهايتها...حزنت جدا من التعامل اللإنساني في مكان يفترض أن يكون بؤرة الإنسانية. عجبت من الفساد والنفاق المتغلغل فيه مع تأثيمه له
كيف يحمل مكان نقيضين؟
كيف يكون حامل الشرف مُدنسه؟
تعرف الجواب في الراهبة
سوزان سيمونان فتاة لم تبلغ العشرين عانت من اضطهاد والدتها وقسوة معاملتها وتمييزها عن أختيها. تقرر أمها إرسالها للدير رغم رفض سوزان حياة الرهبة، تعترف لها الأم أنها ثمرة خطيئة وتعتبر سوزان مشاركة فيها وعليها التكفير عنها بالترهب.
تعاني سوزان خلال انتقالها بي
...more
Marinho Lopes
Sep 05, 2015 Marinho Lopes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Diderot faz uso da primeira pessoa para dar voz a uma freira “religiosa” que, encarcerada num convento contra a sua vontade, ilustra tudo quanto era errado na existência dessas prisões cristãs. O enredo é naturalmente marcado pelas crueldades e angústias desta religiosa, que se vê impotente para viver a vida do modo que desejaria. A obra é baseada numa história real, mas não precisava, pois facilmente se adivinharia que inúmeras histórias semelhantes aconteceram de facto. Confesso que mesmo sabe ...more
Yann
Dec 03, 2012 Yann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Brrr, une critique sans concessions des couvents et de l'ambiance qui y régnait au XVIII eme siècle. J'ai beaucoup aimé.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Julie, or the New Heloise
  • Love in Excess
  • The Adventures of Peregrine Pickle
  • Camilla
  • The Man of Feeling
  • Memoirs of Martinus Scriblerus
  • Amelia
  • The Female Quixote: or, the Adventures of Arabella
  • Persian Letters
  • Hyperion oder Der Eremit in Griechenland
  • Caleb Williams
  • Ormond
  • Roxana
  • The Princesse de Clèves
  • An Ethiopian Romance
  • L'Abbé C
  • The History of Rasselas, Prince of Abissinia
  • The Unfortunate Traveller and Other Works
11004
Denis Diderot was a French philosopher, art critic, and writer. He was a prominent persona during the Enlightenment and is best known for serving as co-founder and chief editor of and contributor to the Encyclopédie.

Diderot also contributed to literature, notably with Jacques le fataliste et son maître (Jacques the Fatalist and his Master), which emulated Laurence Sterne in challenging conventions
...more
More about Denis Diderot...

Share This Book



“لا أطلب من الله تليين قلوب من شاء أن يجعلني تابعة لهن ,بل أطلب أن يمنحني القدرة على الألم ,وأن ينقذني من اليأس وأن يأخذني إليه بلا إبطاء” 6 likes
“الشر نفسه يأتي إما من الله الذي يمتحنا أو من الشيطان الذي يوسوس لنا” 3 likes
More quotes…