Founding Feminisms in Medieval Studies

March 2016
37 black and white illustrations
280 pages
23.4x15.6 cm
ISBN: 9781843844273
Format: Hardback
Library eBook
BISAC LIT011000, LIT004150

Founding Feminisms in Medieval Studies

Essays in Honor of E. Jane Burns

Edited by Laine E. Doggett, Daniel E. O'Sullivan

Essays using feminist approaches to offer fresh insights into aspects of the texts and the material culture of the middle ages.
Feminist discourses have called into question axiomatic world views and shown how gender and sexuality inevitably shape our perceptions, both historically and in the present moment. Founding Feminisms in Medieval Studies advances that critical endeavour with new questions and insights relating to gender and queer studies, sexualities, the subaltern, margins, and blurred boundaries. The volume's contributions, from French literary studies as well as German, English, history and art history, evince a variety of modes of feminist analysis, primarily in medieval studies but with extensions into early modernism. Several interrogate the ethics of feminist hermeneutics, the function of women characters in various literary genres, and so-called "natural" binaries - sex/gender, male/female, East/West, etc. - that undergird our vision of the world. Others investigate learned women and notions of female readership, authorship, and patronage in the production and reception of texts and manuscripts. Still others look at bodies - male male, female, neither, and both - and how clothes cover and socially encode them.
Founding Feminisms in Medieval Studies is a tribute to E. Jane Burns, whose important work has proven foundational to late twentieth- and early twenty-first-century Old French feminist studies. Through her scholarship, teaching, and leadership in co-founding the Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship, Burns has inspired a new generation of feminist scholars.

Laine E. Doggett is Associate Professor of French at St. Mary's College of Maryland, St. Mary's City; Daniel E. O'Sullivan is Professor of French at the University of Mississippi.

Contributors: Cynthia J. Brown, Matilda Tomaryn Bruckner, Kristin L. Burr, Madeline H. Caviness, Laine E. Doggett, Sarah-Grace Heller, Ruth Mazo Karras, Roberta L. Krueger, Sharon Kinoshita, Tom Linkinen, Daniel E. O'Sullivan, Lisa Perfetti, Ann Marie Rasmussen, Nancy Freeman Regalado, Elizabeth Robertson, Helen Solterer

An e-book version of this title is available (9781782046196), to libraries through a number of trusted suppliers. See here for a full list of our partners.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Work of E. Jane Burns and the Feminisms of Medieval Studies - Laine E Doggett and Daniel E. O'Sullivan
Natural and Unnatural Woman: Melusine Inside and Out - Matilda Tomaryn Bruckner
Nurturing Debate in Le Roman de Silence - Kristin Burr
The Man Backing Down from the Lady in Trobairitz Tensos - Daniel E. O'Sullivan
Having Fun with Women: Why a Feminist Teaches Fabliaux - Lisa Perfetti
Hats and Veils: There's No Such Thing as Freedom of Choice, and It's a Good Thing Too - Madeline H. Caviness
When the Knight Undresses, his Clothing Speaks: Vestimentary Allegories in the works of Baudouin de Condé (c. 1240-1280) - Sarah-Grace Heller
John/Eleanor Rykener Revisited - Ruth Karras and Tom Linkinen
Women's Healing: from Binaries to a Nexus - Laine E Doggett
Silk in the Age of Marco Polo - Sharon Kinoshita
Another Land's End of Literature: Honorat Bovet and the Timbuktu Effect - Helen Solterer
Anne de Bretagne and Anne de France: French Female Networks at the Dawn of the Renaissance - Cynthia J. Brown
Staging Female Authority in Chantilly MS 522: Marguerite de Navarre's La Coche - Roberta L Krueger
Babies and Books:The Holy Kinship as a Way of Thinking About Women's Power in Late Medieval Northern Europe - Ann Marie Rasmussen
Page Layout and Reading Practices in Christine de Pisan's Epistre Othea: Reading with the Ladies in London, BL, MS Harley 4431 - Nancy Freeman Regalado
Afterword - Elizabeth Robertson


By every measure, E. Jane Burns is a founding mother of medieval feminist scholarship. ... She richly deserves a high-quality Festschrift, and I am happy to say that she has received one. MEDIEVAL FEMINIST FORUM

As testimony to the powerful influence brought to the profession by Burns, examples of inspiration and influence appear throughout, including several by notable French medievalist feminists. THE MEDIEVAL REVIEW

Also by Author

Also in Series