Voorhees offers new scholarship on a broad array of topics related to Christian Science identity focusing on reception history. With attention to fully resourced details and modern scholarship, Voorhees outlines the reception history of Christian Science in fields of religion, women studies, American history, politics, medicine, and metaphysics. She probes Mary Baker Eddy’s relationships with contemporary scholars, religion leaders, and students.View Annotation
Controversies Involving Mark Twain
The resources discussing controversies involving Mark Twain are listed below. Click “View Annotation” to learn more about the resource.
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Mary Baker Eddy was among the first religious figures to research intellectual property–her activism resulted in the passage of the Copyright Act of 1909. She saw copyright “as a legal bulwark maintaining both the internal coherence of her work and its ineradicable link to her personality,” presaging her later appointing Science and Health (along with the Bible) as Pastor of the Christian Science Church.View Annotation
Reesman details many parallels between Mark Twain’s troubled later life and his one-dimensional literary portrayals of both Joan of Arc and Mary Baker Eddy. Both were visionaries. Joan’s voice in her trial record is consistent, but Eddy was delusional. Eddy uses her mentor, Quimby’s, words for her own profit. Both of Twain’s literary portrayals put his own personality on full display.View Annotation
Squires sees the opening of the Mary Baker Eddy Library as an opportunity for literary scholars to give closer attention to the history, doctrines, and distinctions of Christian Science. Only then will there be an honest and accurate account for the literature that seeks to represent or critique them.View Annotation
Although these contemporary authors never met, their mutual interest in sincere religion and the power of thought inevitably brought the two distinguished figures into a provocative relationship. The fact that he shifted his position on Christian Science several times indicates the conflict within his own worldview. It was no more insane than any other channel of human thought. Just more interesting.View Annotation
In her review, Bednarowski describes Gottschalk’s study as “a provocative blend of intellectual history, theological analysis, cultural interpretation, and religious conviction” (213). He focuses on the latter, controversial years, in which Mary Baker Eddy was compelled to articulate more definitively for herself and her students the distinctive way that Christian Science should combat various forms of materialism: medical, philosophical, and ecclesiastical.View Annotation
Gill, a feminist historian and biographer, offers a fresh view of Mary Baker Eddy’s achievements in the light of obstacles faced by women in her time. Without access to Church archives Gill relied on Peel’s archival research. Gill’s unique contribution challenges the traditional biographers’ view of Eddy as a hysterical invalid who abandoned her son and stole her ideas.View Annotation
Beasley’s biography begins with Mary Baker Eddy’s early years, her 1866 breakthrough on the nature of Jesus’s healing, and the publication of her teachings in her textbook Science and Health. The bulk of the book focuses on Eddy’s establishment of her Church and its organizational structure—her means of protecting her teachings and developing movement.View Annotation
Clara Clemens, daughter of Mark Twain, records the help she received “both physically and metaphysically” in her experience of Christian Science. The book details her life journey with numerous quotes from the Bible and Science and Health, and how she applied Christian Science to her challenges.View Annotation
Mark Twain’s book on Christian Science is drawn primarily from articles he had written over the years for Cosmopolitan and other periodicals. He fully engaged his vivid imagination in creating this text, fueled by evidence (some true, some false) offered to him from hostile sources such as Frederick Peabody, who made a career out of defaming Eddy.View Annotation