Sonia Velázquez (Indiana University - Bloomington) in conversation with Clémence Boulouque
Saint Mary of Egypt has fascinated theologians, poets, and artists since the seventh century. Her story is richly evocative: encompassing sin and sanctity, concupiscence and asceticism, youth and old age. In her 2023 book Promiscuous Grace, Sonia Velázquez thinks with Saint Mary of Egypt about the relationship between beauty and holiness. With an archive spanning Spanish medieval poetry, Baroque paintings, seventeenth-century hagiography, and Balzac’s Le chef-d’oeuvre inconnu, Velázquez argues for the importance of the senses on the surface of religious texts on her way to revealing why the legend of Saint Mary of Egypt still matters today.