Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 8424
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Cornish , Alison.
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: A Lady Asks: The Gender of Vulgarization in Late Medieval Italy
  • Source URL: PMLA: Publications of the Modern Language Association of America (Full Text via JSTOR) 115, 2 (March 2000): 166-180. Link Info target = '_blank'>PMLA: Publications of the Modern Language Association of America (Full Text via JSTOR) 115, 2 (March 2000): 166-180. Link Info
  • Description:
  • Article Type: Journal Article
  • Subject (See Also): Cavalcanti, Guido, Poet- Donna Me Prega Dante Alighieri, Poet Gender Italian Language Latin Language Literature- Prose Literature- Verse Love in Literature Readers Translation Vernacular Language
  • Geographic Area: Italy
  • Century: 13- 14
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  • Abstract: Classical texts were extensively translated into the vernacular in Italy during the period when Italian poetry began, and the "mentality" of translation is traceable in this early verse. Vernacularization is gendered female, especially in the conventions of lyric poetry. As exemplified in some thirteenth- and fourteenth-century poems and their prose commentaries, "vulgarization" is often presented as a discourse to women, who are conceived as a superior rather than an inferior audience. Instead of demeaning the Latin original, this kind of vulgarization paradoxically ennobles both the learned or scientific content and the young language in which it is written. This peculiar moment of Italian literary history contrasts with concurrent translation in France, with the subsequent abandonment of vulgarization under the influence of Petrarch, and with modern notions of the politics of translation.
  • Author's Affiliation: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 2000.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 00308129
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