Bad joke, I apologize. In class last time, we touched on the idea of “matter that isn’t matter”. Think back to when Bynum discussed the paradox of Jesus’ body (material) ascending to heaven (divine). Consider the devils’ chains in The Incestuous Daughter. Does a similar paradox exist here? The chains change how the woman behaves. Does this make them “real”? Does it make them material?
One point Bynum continually makes in this chapter is that the mysterious occurrences (real or imagined) elicited reactions from people. In the section “Change as Threat and Opportunity”, what sorts of questions do miracles raise? How can you relate this to the concept of “thing power” that we discussed in “Vibrant Matter”?
Of Jeffrey Cohen’s three summarizations, which approach did you identify with most? Why?
How did Fresne’s ring and clothing affect the overall direction of her stories? How might the stories have concluded if her biological mother had left her with nothing initially?