I took advantage of a rainy day to watch a series of documentaries by the BBC called Tudor Monastery Farm. It is a documentary series where three individuals live the life people would have lived at the relevant time period for a year. During this year they try farming, mining, fishing and other skills and crafts from the time.
These are observational and experimental documentaries. They take the observational cinÃ©ma veritÃ© and Direct cinema approach to factual television production. As you watch these documentaries so you are transported to a different time period.
For years or even decades I thought of this time period as a bad time period. I thought of the church as being an oppressive force. Through this set of documentaries I eventually felt sad that monasteries and the way of life that was illustrated in the series of documentaries was dissolved by Henry the Eighth.
Imagine a monastery with 20,000 sheep, imagine the work that was lost by stone masons as the need for monastery construction and other activities declined.
If you find this documentary series I strongly recommend watching it.