GEORGES BERNANOS' DEBT TO THERESE OF LISIEUX

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Dorschell, Mary Frances Catherine. 267pp HBK

This study examines in chronological order Bernanos' entire work, fiction and non-fiction, in search of Therese's presence. It points out explicit textual references to the saint, whether to her name, quotations from works, or to earlier studies done by scholars attempting to show her influence on the author. It traces Therese's implicit presence in Bernanos' fictional characters, whether they reveal parallel or reverse images of the saint. It also traces Therese's message in many of Bernanos' favorite themes: heroic childhood, the acceptance of weakness, the uniting of personal suffering with the Holy Agony, and the attitude of approaching God with a beggar's empty hands. This close analysis of Bernanos' debt to Therese of Lisieux opens new perspectives, and answer's Gaucher's request for an exhaustive examination of her presence in Bernanos' work.