Gendering the Master Narrative: Women and Power in the Middle Ages

Front Cover
Mary Carpenter Erler, Maryanne Kowaleski
Cornell University Press, 2003 - History - 269 pages
1 Review
Gendering the Master Narrative asks whether a female tradition of power might have existed distinct from the male one, and how such a tradition might have been transmitted. It describes women's progress toward power as a push-pull movement, showing how practices and institutions that ostensibly enabled women in the Middle Ages could sometimes erode their authority as well.This book provides a much-needed theoretical and historical reassessment of medieval women's power. It updates the conclusions from the editors' essential volume on that topic, Women and Power in the Middle Ages, which was published in 1988 and altered the prevailing view of female subservience by correcting the nearly ubiquitous equation of "power" with "public authority." Most scholars now accept a broader definition of power based on the interactions between men and women.In their Introduction, Mary C. Erler and Maryanne Kowaleski survey the directions in which the study of medieval women's agency has developed in the past fifteen years. Like its predecessor, this volume is richly interdisciplinary. It contains essays by highly regarded scholars of history, literature, and art history, and features seventeen black-and-white illustrations and two maps.
  

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

Women and Power through the Family Revisited
17
Who Is the Master of This Narrative?
94
The Image of St Anne Teaching the Virgin Mary
105
The Case of Dame Nature
135
Women in the Late Medieval English Parish
156
Womens Influence on the Design of Urban Homes
193
Authority and Intimacy in the Late Medieval Urban Home
212
References
229
Contributors
257
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2003)

Mary Erler is a professor in the Department of English at Fordham University.

Maryanne Kowaleski is Joseph Fitzpatrick S.J. Distinguished Professor of Social Science and History and Director of the Center for Medieval Studies at Fordham University in New York. She is also the author of Local Markets and Regional Trade in Medieval Exeter (Cambridge University Press, 1995), editor of The Local Customs Accounts of the Port of Exeter, 1266-1322 (Devon & Cornwall Record Society, 1993), and co-editor of Gendering the Master Narrative: Women and Power in the Middle Ages (Cornell University Press, 2003).

Bibliographic information