Topic: Constructing holiness and unholiness through writing and reflection of authorial motivations in Christian literary works produced in medieval Byzantium.
Overview: For the successful completion of this project, examining the authorial role in composing hagiographical literature and possible motivations behind hagiographers for promoting the cult of saints is paramount. Medieval Byzantium was actually quite a skeptical society, and as such, hagiographers were necessitated to bolster the persuasiveness of their narrative by using various literary techniques for a successful fashioning of their protagonists as saints. Spiritual and religious motivations were not the only inspirations of their strong dedication, however, because in Byzantium, ecclesiastical, imperial, or popular recognition of the cult could result in substantial economic and political benefits for its followers. These apparent circumstances around the genre of hagiographical literature and the cult of saints in Byzantium are deeply considered at the heart of my historical investigation.