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The Polemical Text in the Light of Theory of Capitals: Petrus Alfonsi's "Dialogue".

Student: Iuliia Shumilova

Supervisor: Evgeny Khvalkov

Faculty: School of Arts and Humanities

Educational Programme: History (Bachelor)

Year of Graduation: 2020

Within the last 20 years, with the development of “new intellectual history”, the interest to the study of medieval polemical works increased. However, only a few research studies, especially in Russian historiography, have been dedicated to studying the “Dialogue” of Petrus Alfonsi. Initially, the main social relations of the author of the "Dialogue" revealed through the analysis of the few facts of Alfonsi's biography and the prologue of the "Dialogue". Moreover, the analysis of this study includes the influence of accumulated social capital (the author's "network") to his duty as a polemist and as a statesman at the turn of the 11th and 12th centuries. Further, through the analysis of the polemist's "library" (the books and works of Arab and Latin men of science he was familiar with) and his works, I have examined the intellectual capital of Petrus Alfonsi. The research study exposes the life of Petrus Alfonsi as an excellent example of the performance of social capital at the dawn of the 12th century. As an example, a polemist who decided to renounce his former religion reached certain heights at a court and in the main deal of his life, the dispute with his former co-religionists. Thus, Petrus Alfonsi transformed these kinds of social capital into the symbolic capital, the most important kind of capital for a medieval author.

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