“The very parallels and implications of medieval sermon writers’ equation of demons, Jews, and women speaks louder than many a polemic would. The author’s analysis of prejudice, medieval theology, and the cultural/psychological/religious gains of ‘otherizing’ strikes me as spirited, fair-minded, measured, and compelling.” Timea Szell, Barnard College, Columbia University
Devils, Women, and Jews: Reflections of the Other in Medieval Sermon Storiesby Joan Young Gregg
Contemporary misogyny and antisemitism have their roots in the demonization of women and Jews in medieval Christendom. In church art and mass preaching, the construct of the devil as an outcast from heaven and the source of all evil was linked both to the conception of women as sensual and malicious figures betraying man’s soul on its arduous journey to salvation and to the notion of Jews as treacherous dissidents in the Christian landscape. These stereotypes, widely disseminated for over three hundred years, persist today.
Meet the Author
Joan Young Gregg is Professor at New York City Technical College, City University of New York. She is the author of Communication and Culture: A Reading-Writing Text; co-author of The Human Condition: A Rhetoric with Thematic Readings; Past, Present, and Future: A Reading-Writing Text; and Science and Society: A Reading-Writing Text; and editor of Soul Rebels: The Rastafari and To Listen, To Comfort, To Care.
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