Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 43659
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Cohen-Hanegbi , Naama
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: Postpartum Mental Distress in Late Medieval Europe
  • Source: Mediaeval Journal 9, 1 ( 2019): Pages 109 - 141. Available with a subscription: https://doi.org/10.1484/J.TMJ.5.119914.
  • Description:
  • Article Type: Journal Article
  • Subject (See Also): Childbirth Mental Illness Waiting to be Indexed
  • Award Note:
  • Geographic Area:
  • Century: 12- 13- 14- 15- 16
  • Primary Evidence:
  • Illustrations:
  • Table:
  • Abstract: This article considers evidence of mental distress in relation to childbirth in late medieval Europe between the twelfth and early sixteenth centuries. It examines diverse sources written by physicians, clergy, and the laity in which women appear to suffer emotional instability in proximity to parturition. In lieu of arguing for antecedents of a modern recognized malady, the article retrieves the array of meanings attributed to incidents of postpartum mental instability in the pre-modern sources. It examines the relationship between physical pain and mental distress, the role of ritual in treatment, and the management of time in relation to postpartum mental anguish. It also contributes to a broader understanding of the dynamics between materiality and emotionality and the female body. [Reproduced from the journal page on the Brepols Online website: https://doi.org/10.1484/J.TMJ.5.119914]
  • Author's Affiliation: Tel Aviv University
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 2019.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 20335385 (print); 20335393 (online)