Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 9147
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Ashley , Kathleen.
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: The "Miroir des bonnes Femmes": Not for Women Only? ["To read the 'Miroir des bonnes femmes' as relating only to women, therefore, would be to misunderstand its role in the formation of new ideologies during the fourteenth through the sixteenth centuries. The conjunction of female-based rhetoric, familial identities, and the promise of social advancement through proper conduct marks the first stage of a distinctive bourgeois ideology that will be fully articulated and culturally dominant by the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Despite the assumption, perhaps, on the part of conduct book owners that they are justifying a claim to 'noble' rank, it is in bourgeois culture that female honor is made the symbolic basis of a family's social reputation. As they cultivated that reputation and fostered a process of social advancement, fathers as well as their daughters therefore had a vital interest in owning conduct texts addressed to women." p. 102].
  • Source: Medieval Conduct.  Edited by Kathleen Ashley and Robert L. A. Clark.  Medieval Cultures, Volume 29. University of Minnesota Press, 2001.  Pages 86 - 105.
  • Description:
  • Article Type: Essay
  • Subject (See Also): Bourgeoisie Family Gender Handbooks Honor Human Behavior Manuscripts- Ownership of Miroir des Bonnes Femmes, Didactic Work Readers Social Class Social Mobility
  • Geographic Area: France
  • Century: 14- 15- 16
  • Related Resources: See a related essay by Susan Udry, Books of Women's Conduct from France During the High and Late Middle Ages, 1200-1400 (from ORB: The Online Reference Book for Medieval Studies)
  • Primary Evidence: Manuscript; Dijon, Bibliothque municipale, MS fr. 213. Dated to the beginning of the fifteenth century, ownership statements and family records written in the manuscript allow the author to reconstruct its ownership through several related bourgeois families, namely
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  • Author's Affiliation: University of Southern Maine
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 2001.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 0816635757
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