Fama: The Politics of Talk and Reputation in Medieval Europe
Thelma S. Fenster, Daniel Lord Smail
Cornell University Press, 2003 - History - 227 pages
In medieval Europe, the word fama denoted both talk (what was commonly said about a person or event) and an individual's ensuing reputation (one's fama). Although talk by others was no doubt often feared, it was also valued and even cultivated as a vehicle for shaping one's status. People had to think about how to "manage" their fama, which played an essential role in the medieval culture of appearances.At the same time, however, institutions such as law courts and the church, alarmed by the power of talk, sought increasingly to regulate it. Christian moral discourse, literary and visual representation, juristic manuals, and court records reflected concern about talk. This book's authors consider how talk was created and entered into memory. They address such topics as fama's relation to secular law and the preoccupations of the church, its impact on women's lives, and its capacity to shape the concept of literary authorship.
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accusations Akehurst aprisio Athelston Augustine authority bad reputation barratry Beaumanoir bishop Book Breton lay Cambridge Charles Charles's Chris Chris Wickham Christine de Pizan Christine's church claim clerical common knowledge court Craun crime culture defamation discourse dispute early Eike example exemplum false fama Fama e infamia fame father fifteenth centuries Florence fourteenth century France fraternal correction French gesture Giovanni gossip honor hue-raising Ibid infamy judge jurists king late medieval Latin Lollards London mala fama Margery Kempe Margery's medieval memory Middle Ages Middle English Migliorino narrative notoire oath offama oral Oxford Paris pastoral person poem proof punishment rebuke role romance royal rules Sachsenspiegel Saint sche scolding Siete Partidas sins Sir Launfal slander social Society speech act status Summa swearing talk testify thirteenth-century Thomas tion Tongue tradition trans truth Tryamour's University Press Visigothic Code woman women words Wymound's