Joan of Arc: Historical Figure and Political Hero Descriptive Essay

Joan of Arc: Historical Figure and Political Hero
An outline of the life and history of Joan of Arc including why she attained sainthood and the issues concerning her legacy.
# 147354 | 2,054 words | 3 sources | APA | 2011 | US

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This paper examines how Joan of Arc has been the subject of much controversy as well as national pride and honor for centuries and how this controversial historical figure has been labeled many things such as heretic, witch, martyr, warrior, and saint. The paper discusses why it took nearly 500 years for Joan of Arc to be beautified and eventually granted sainthood by the Catholic Church and how over much of this time her legacy and deeds were confused with other historical figures or misconstrued as acts of aggression or violence.

Legend and Myth
Downfall and Legacy
Joan as Saint and Symbol

From the Paper:

"Joan of Arc was a very complex historical figure but over the past 500 years she has gained attention as not only a woman warrior but as a religious visionary and leader (Richey, 8). Ridiculed during her time and put upon an historical and cultural pedestal after her death at nineteen years old, the story of the personality known as Joan of Arc is as complex and interesting as the history of France and England themselves. Joan grew up in an unassuming French village and, at the age of 12, began to describe her visions of many of the Catholic Saints (Taylor, 14). She also described in detail the future battles she was to be a part of and the eventual success of the French army in defeating the English, which occurred historically nearly a generation after her death. It is for these visions that Joan was first recognized as a possible medium to the divine, but these same visions also led to her persecution and downfall."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Cristiani, Leon. (1977). Saint Joan of Arc. Daughters of St. Paul's: New York, NY.
  • Richey, Stephen Wesley. (2003). Joan of Arc: The Warrior Saint. Praeger Publishers: Westport, CT.
  • Taylor, Larissa Juliet. (2009). Virgin Warrior: The Life and Death of Joan of Arc. Yale University Press: New Haven, CT.

Cite this Descriptive Essay:

APA Format

Joan of Arc: Historical Figure and Political Hero (2011, March 24) Retrieved April 21, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Joan of Arc: Historical Figure and Political Hero" 24 March 2011. Web. 21 April. 2021. <>