Natural Philosophy and Sacramental Theology in the Works of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz
The Introduction to this study explores the philosophical context in which Sor Juana wrote her Eucharistic plays. It traces the transition from a mindset characterized by scepticism and Neostoicism to the advent of the New Philosophy and an empirical approach to the material world. In particular, it analyses how two authors, Athanasius Kircher and Juan Eusebio Nieremberg, attempted to reconcile empirical ideas with a Christian understanding of the natural world as a reflection of the divine. This chapter then demonstrates how traces of a similar philosophical approach are present in Sor Juana’s works, in particular in her explorations of the natural world, her writings on allegory, and her engagement with Christian figuration.
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