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A History of Women in the West, Volume II: Silences of the Middle Ages

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A History of Women in the West, Volume II: Silences of the Middle Ages Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Drawing on myriad sources--from the faint traces left by the rocking of a cradle at the site of an early medieval home to an antique illustration of Eve's fall from grace-this second volume in the celebrated series offers new perspectives on women of the past. Twelve distinguished historians from many countries examine the image of women in the masculine mind, their social condition, and their daily experience from the demise of the Roman Empire to the genesis of the Italian Renaissance.

More than in any other era, a medieval woman's place in society was determined by men; her sexuality was perceived as disruptive and dangerous, her proper realm that of the home and cloister. The authors draw upon the writings of bishops and abbots, moralists and merchants, philosophers and legislators, to illuminate how men controlled women's lives. Sumptuary laws regulating feminine dress and ornament, pastoral letters admonishing women to keep silent and remain chaste, and learned treatises with their fantastic theories about women's physiology are fully explored in these pages. As adoration of the Virgin Mary reached full flower by the year 1200, ecclesiastics began to envision motherhood as a holy role; misogyny, however, flourished unrestrained in local proverbs, secular verses, and clerical thought throughout the period.

Were women's fates sealed by the dictates of church and society? The authors investigate legal, economic, and demographic aspects of family and communal life between the sixth and the fifteenth centuries and bring to light the fleeting moments in which women managed to seize some small measure of autonomy over their lives. The notion that courtly love empowered feudal women is discredited in this volume. The pattern of wear on a hearthstone, fingerprints on a terra-cotta pot, and artifacts from everyday life such as scissors, thimbles, spindles, and combs are used to reconstruct in superb detail the commonplace tasks that shaped women's existence inside and outside the home. As in antiquity, male fantasies and fears are evident in art. Yet a growing number of women rendered visions of their own gender in sumptuous tapestries and illuminations. The authors look at the surviving texts of female poets and mystics and document the stirrings of a quiet revolution throughout the West, as a few daring women began to preserve their thoughts in writing.

Synopsis:

Drawing on myriad sources--from the faint traces left by the rocking cradle at the site of an early medieval home to an antique illustration of Eve's fall from grace--this second volume in the celebrated series offers new perspectives on women of the past. Twelve renowned historians from many countries examine the image of women in the masculine mind, their social condition, and their daily experience from the demise of the Roman Empire to the genesis of the Italian Renaissance.

About the Author

Georges Duby, a member of the Acadandeacute;mie Franandccedil;aise, is Professor of Medieval History at the <>Collandegrave;ge de France.Michelle Perrotis Professor of Contemporary History at the <>Universitandeacute; de Paris VII.Christiane Klapisch-Zuberis Directeur d'andEacute;tudes at the <>andEacute;cole des Hautes andEacute;tudes en Sciences Sociales.

Table of Contents

Writing the History of Women
Georges Duby and Michelle Perrot

Including Women
Christiane Klapisch-Zuber
Translated by Arthur Goldhammer

1. Norms of Control

1. The Clerical Gaze
Jacques Dalarun
Translated by Arthur Goldhammer


2. The Nature of Woman
Claude Thomasset
Translated by Arthur Goldhammer


3. The Protected Woman
Carla Casagrande
Translated by Clarissa Botsford


4. The Good Wife
Silvana Vecchio
Translated by Clarissa Botsford


5. Regulating Women's Fashion
Diane Owen Hughes

2. Family and Social Strategies

6. Women from the Fifth to the Tenth Century
Suzanne Fonay Wemple

7. The Feudal Order
Paulette L'Hermite-Leclercq
Translated and adapted by Arthur Goldhammer


8. The Courtly Model
Georges Duby
Translated by Arthur Goldhammer


9. Life in the Late Middle Ages
Claudia Opitz
Translated by Deborah Lucas Schneider

3. Vestiges and Images of Women

10. The World of Women
Françoise Piponnier
Translated by Arthur Goldhammer


11. The Imagined Woman
Chiara Frugoni
Translated by Clarissa Botsford

4. Women's Words

12. Literary and Mystical Voices
Danielle Rénier-Bohler
Translated and adapted by Arthur Goldhammer

Notes

Bibliography

Contributors

Illustration Credits

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674403680
Author:
Klapisch-Zuber, Christiane
Publisher:
Belknap Press
Editor:
Perrot, Michelle
Author:
Perrot, Michelle
Author:
Goldhammer, Arthur
Author:
Klapisch-Zuber, Christiane
Location:
Cambridge
Subject:
General
Subject:
History
Subject:
Women's Studies - History
Subject:
General History
Subject:
Medieval
Subject:
Gender Studies-Womens Studies
Subject:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Women
Subject:
s Studies
Subject:
Reference - General
Copyright:
Series:
A History of Women in the West
Series Volume:
02
Publication Date:
July 1998
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
57 halftones, 1 line illustration
Pages:
592
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 26 oz

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Feminist Studies » History
History and Social Science » Gender Studies » Womens Studies
History and Social Science » Western Civilization » Medieval
History and Social Science » World History » General
History and Social Science » World History » Medieval and Renaissance
Religion » Comparative Religion » General

A History of Women in the West, Volume II: Silences of the Middle Ages Used Trade Paper
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Product details 592 pages Belknap Press - English 9780674403680 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Drawing on myriad sources--from the faint traces left by the rocking cradle at the site of an early medieval home to an antique illustration of Eve's fall from grace--this second volume in the celebrated series offers new perspectives on women of the past. Twelve renowned historians from many countries examine the image of women in the masculine mind, their social condition, and their daily experience from the demise of the Roman Empire to the genesis of the Italian Renaissance.
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