Friday, November 30, 2012

Pope Urban X and Palestrina possibly represent Voltaire's attempt at bashing the Clergy

In class the other day we discussed Voltaire's repeated attempts at bashing the Clergy throughout Candide and how he had previously gone to jail for it.  One thing we did not discuss that I realized was that it seems ironic that Pope Urban X and Palestrina had a child, the old woman in Candide.  I thought it was against church rules for a Pope or any other Clergy member to either be married or have kids.  Since Pope Urban X is the father of the old lady, he therefore broke Catholic Church rules.  Voltaire is bashing the Catholic Church by putting this in Candide.

2 comments:

Grant Reggio said...

I agree. Being that Pope Urban X didn't actually exist, Voltaire cannot technically be arrested for defamation of a clergy member. This tactical move, however, does more than simply protect Voltaire from going to prison in that it also bashes the clergy just as effectively as if he'd been defaming an actual pope.

TSHAH said...

I agree with you Austin in terms of Voltaire satirizing the Catholic church, however I believe he is satirizing organized religion as a whole, not just Catholicism. Voltaire bases Candide around his comments on human nature, and here Voltaire is trying to show that people do not need mediums to celebrate God as is just further removes them from God, Voltaire uses characters like the Pope and the Priest who engaged in sexual activities that they should not have, and yet they are suppose to be the leaders, and set the proper example for living life in the eyes of God.