Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 9637
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Straus , Barrie Ruth.
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: Freedom Through Renunciation? Women's Voices, Women's Bodies, and the Phallic Order [female literary characters who want to abstain from sex].
  • Source: Desire and Discipline: Sex and Sexuality in the Premodern West.  Edited by Jacqueline Murray and Konrad Eisenbichler.  University of Toronto Press, 1996.  Pages 245 - 264.
  • Description:
  • Article Type: Essay
  • Subject (See Also): Body Chastity in Literature Chaucer, Geoffrey, Poet- Canterbury Tales- Knight's Tale Chaucer, Geoffrey, Poet- Parliament of Fowls Kempe, Margery, Mystic Literature- Prose Literature- Verse Mystics Sexuality in Literature Women in Literature
  • Geographic Area: British Isles
  • Century: 14- 15
  • Related Resources: "A less optimistic view of medieval meetings between men and women is contained in Barrie Ruth Straus, "Freedom through Renunciation? Women's Voices, Women's Bodies, and the Phallic Order". Here we meet some of Chaucer's works together with Margery Kempe, who is perhaps the central female figure in this collection, for she appears in several articles. If I understand the article correctly, then Straus does not believe that medieval men could know what women wanted, for they were so caught up in themselves. I agree that we find, as in Margery, a "struggle for control of women's bodies and their sexuality by the Church" (p. 257). But I would add, as before, that men were also struggling for the control of their own bodies." From the review written by Brian McGuire of "Desire and Discipline: Sex and Sexuality in the Premodern West," "Medieval Review" (TMR ID: 96.12.11). [Reproduced by permission of the "Medieval Review."].
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  • Author's Affiliation: University of Windsor
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 1996.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 0802007805
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