Article written by a former Saint Mary's history faculty member.
"The public life of John Baptist de La Salle (1651–1719) as saint and educational innovator is better known than his private life as a nonconforming ascetic. This article examines de La Salle’s attitudes toward Augustinianism, Jansenism, and mortification practices. It then explores the connection between his role as a social subversive and his mental world. While de La Salle’s motivations were religious, his renunciation of the privileges of birth, office, and wealth often evoked hostility, especially from members of the social elites. Most radical was de La Salle’s determination to be poor, which entailed psychological and physical challenges that were powerfully expressed in his relationship with food." (from article abstract)