Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 4115
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Partner , Nancy F.
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: Did Mystics Have Sex? [argues that medievalists need to use psychoanalytic theory and cross-cultural anthropology to come to grips with the full mental structure of medieval people, thereby restoring the "depth, complexity, and fellowship with ourselves they deserve"].
  • Source: Desire and Discipline: Sex and Sexuality in the Premodern West.  Edited by Jacqueline Murray and Konrad Eisenbichler.  University of Toronto Press, 1996.  Pages 296 - 311.
  • Description:
  • Article Type: Essay
  • Subject (See Also): Anthropology Historiography Mystics Periodization Psychoanalytic Theory Self in Literature Sexuality Women in Religion
  • Geographic Area: General
  • Century: General
  • Related Resources: "Finally, Nancy F. Partner, "Did Mystics have Sex?" asks us to explain what we mean by mystical experience, whether in Margery Kempe or anyone else. I applaud her desire to understand medieval people, but I am wary of her suggested explanation. Behind the brilliant fireworks of her refreshingly irreverent language, Partner seems to be saying that we can reduce the medieval search for God in mysticism to a universalized and timeless form of repressed sexuality. This reductio ad sexualitatemis a danger not only in Partner's article but in present-day concern for being explicit and honest about sexual behavior and attitudes in the past -- or in the present." 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: McGill University
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 1996.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 0802007805
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