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For more than two decades Louise Sommer’s passion has been investigating the role of women in European history. In an effort to understand where our modern-day thought patterns originate regarding gender (men, women, masculinity and femininity), she has educated herself through all manner of reference materials – from research papers, books and articles, as well as her extensive travels.
Through her research Louise realised the role Christianity has played in forming our current Western gender roles. These studies led her to look even further back, examining pre-historical cultures in Europe (the goddess cultures from 12.000 BC through until Christianity), as well as immersing herself in studies of indigenous cultures.
Louise (b.1972) holds a Masters degree in Educational Psychology and a BA degree in Social Education and is specialised in complicated grief and crisis.
Considering herself a global gypsy, Louise loves travelling and has experienced many of the beautiful cultures on the planet. As well as having lived in Denmark, she has resided in the USA and Thailand, and now calls Australia home.
on July 09, 2016 :
I really enjoyed this book, it was a refreshing look at the Camino as I've read a few books on this pilgrimage, perhaps it's because it was written by a woman, or a European instead of an American man. Or perhaps because of the focus on early christianity and paganism in celtic Europe, interests which resonate strongly with me.
I'm hoping to walk the Camino next year, the Camino Portugues though as Portugal pulls me more than Spain. We shall see what happens.
I know that I now have some great questions for friends of mine who are more deeply read than I when it comes to Cebele, Diana and Mary Magdalene. Ireland of course still has traces of goddess power/connection on some really old churches in the shape of Sile na Gigs, old sculptures which adorn the entrance ways into some of our remaining ancient churches.
Other than these symbols I'm unsure how many other symbols are left inside the churches as they have been modernised so much however I know that I'll be looking with new eyes now thanks to this book.
As well as the interesting view on the role of woman in early/contemporary religion this book also lists great advice for walkers who have not yet attempted a long walk of this nature. Throughout the book you may learn from the mistakes of others if you so choose, what works well and what doesn't as regards boots, feet, food etc.
(reviewed 5 days after purchase)