For the first time, Sophie Harwood uses the Old French tradition as a lens through which to examine women and warfare from the 12th to the 14th centuries. The result is a skilled analysis of gender roles in the medieval era, and a heightened awareness of how important literary texts are to our understanding of the historical period in which they circulated.
Medieval Women and War examines both the text and illustrations of over 30 Old French manuscripts to highlight the ways in many of the texts differ from their traditionally assumed (usually classical) sources. Structured around five pivotal female types - women cited as causes for violence, women as victims of violence, women as ancillaries to warriors, women as warriors themselves, and women as political influences - this important book unpicks gendered boundaries to shed new light on the social, political and military structures of warfare as well as adding nuance to current debates on womanhood in the middle ages.
||Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
||30 bw illus
Höhe: 234 mm
Breite: 156 mm
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Sophie Harwood is an independent scholar, who achieved her PhD in 2017 from the University of Leeds, UK.
List of Figures
List of Tables
Notes on the Text
List of Abbreviations and Sigils
1. Reading Texts through the Manuscript Tradition, 1150 - 1400
2. Women as Reasons for War
3. Women as Victims of War
4. Women as Ancillaries in War
5. Women as Warriors in War
6. Women as Diplomats in War
Appendix 1. Catalogue of Manuscripts
Appendix 2. Manuscript Illustrations of Women
Harwood's unveiling of a rich and largely untapped seam of Old French material on women in war-fighting, suffering, negotiating-will undoubtedly be of great value to scholarship. What is so refreshing about Medieval Women and War is that close study of the textual representations of women at war in the twelfth-century romans is holistically integrated with analysis of the illumination, patronage, and reception of the manuscripts in which they are found. * Simon Thomas Parsons, Teaching Fellow in Medieval History, King's College London, UK * Stunningly written, Sophie Harwood's book is a pioneering investigation of how medieval French literature envisaged women's roles and agency in war. This is a very stimulating contribution to the history of the interplay between the conduct of warfare and the social construction of gender in the Middle Ages. * Quentin Verreycken, Visiting Lecturer, Universite Saint-Louis - Bruxelles, Belgium. * This book brings historical, codicological and art historical evidence to bear on the representation of women's roles in war in the twelfth-century French romances of antiquity. This is a new approach to an understudied set of twelfth-century romances and will be of interest to both medieval historians and literary scholars. * Jeff Rider, Professor of French and Medieval Studies, Wesleyan University, USA *