The Boswell Thesis: Essays on Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality

The Boswell Thesis: Essays on Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality

by Mathew Kuefler
     
 

ISBN-10: 0226457400

ISBN-13: 9780226457406

Pub. Date: 02/15/2006

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

Few books have had the social, cultural, and scholarly impact of John Boswell's Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality. Arguing that neither the Bible nor the Christian tradition was nearly as hostile to homoeroticism as was generally thought, its initial publication sent shock waves through university classrooms, gay communities, and religious

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Overview

Few books have had the social, cultural, and scholarly impact of John Boswell's Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality. Arguing that neither the Bible nor the Christian tradition was nearly as hostile to homoeroticism as was generally thought, its initial publication sent shock waves through university classrooms, gay communities, and religious congregations. Twenty-five years later, the aftershocks still reverberate. The Boswell Thesis brings together fifteen leading scholars at the intersection of religious and sexuality studies to comment on this book's immense impact, the endless debates it generated, and the many contributions it has made to our culture.

The essays in this magnificent volume examine a variety of aspects of Boswell's interpretation of events in the development of sexuality from Classical Antiquity through the Middle Ages, including a Roman emperor's love letters to another man; suspicions of sodomy among medieval monks, knights, and crusaders; and the gender-bending visions of Christian saints and mystics. Also included are discussions of Boswell's career, including his influence among gay and lesbian Christians and his role in academic debates between essentialists and social constructionists.

Elegant and thought-provoking, this collection provides a fitting twenty-fifth anniversary tribute to the incalculable influence of Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality and its author.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780226457406
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Publication date:
02/15/2006
Series:
The Chicago Series on Sexuality, History, and Society Ser.
Pages:
344
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

Contents

Acknowledgments....................vii
1 The Boswell Thesis by Mathew Kuefler....................1
PART I IMPACT 2 John Boswell's Gay Science: Prolegomenon to a Re-Reading by Ralph Hexter....................35
3 Touching on the Past by Carolyn Dinshaw....................57
4 Reading CSTH as a Call to Action: Boswell and Gay-Affirming Movements in American Christianity by Bernard Schlager....................74
5 "Both as a Christian and as a Historian": On Boswell's Ministry by Mark D. Jordan....................88
PART II DEBATES 6 Fronto + Marcus: Love, Friendship, Letters by Amy Richlin....................111
7 Heterosexism and the Interpretation of Romans 1:18-32 by Dale B. Martin....................130
8 My Sister, My Spouse: Woman-Identified Women in Medieval Christianity by E. Ann Matter....................152
9 R. W. Southern, John Boswell, and the Sexuality of Anselm by Bruce O'Brien....................167
10 Male Friendship and the Suspicion of Sodomy in Twelfth-Century France by Mathew Kuefler....................179
PART III INNOVATIONS 11 Impossible Translation: Antony and Paul the Simple in the Historia Monachorum by Mark Masterson....................215
12 Beauty and Passion in Tenth-Century Córdoba by Jeffrey A. Bowman....................236
13 Sexual Mutilation and Castration Anxiety: A Medieval Perspective by Jacqueline Murray....................254
14 Knighthood, Compulsory Heterosexuality, and Sodomy by Ruth Mazo Karras....................273
15 The Body of Gerardesca of Pisa Reclothed and Resexed by Penelope D. Johnson....................287
16 Francisof Assisi as Mother, Father, and Androgynous Figure by Catherine M. Mooney....................301
List of Contributors....................333
Index....................337

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