Medieval Bodies

Tu 5:30PM - 7:55PM / 1325 Cathedral of Learning / CRN 30291

In this seminar we will explore a number of crucial issues in medieval culture through the lens of the body. Topics include: the gendered body; the hybrid body; the Saracen and black body; the disabled body; the tortured body; the mystic body; the witch’s body; the body politic. Reading texts and studying images from a variety of genres (romances and epics, medical texts, mystical and political treatises, judiciary documents, manuscript illuminations and paintings) we will analyze medieval notions of gender and gender transformation/hybridity; medieval theories about race; definitions of witchcraft as they relate to bodily manifestations; and ideas about pain in relation to martyrdom and torture. We will also explore the growing field of medieval disability studies.


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Renate Blumenfeld-Kosinski

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Course Category

Category B: Disciplines and Intellectual Movements

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