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Perceptions about gender and sexuality have shaped the lives of men and women in every known culture and in every period of history. To study these perceptions one must delve into the underlying religious, social, philosophical and scientific influences. Understanding gender and sexuality during the Middle Ages requires an examination of the ideas, laws and institutions of the time—for example, the regulations of the Christian church, the anatomical studies of the medieval medical community, the chronicles of the time and the social criticism found in medieval literature.
This reader brings such documents from throughout the medieval world into one collection. Representing a diverse range of ethnic, geographic and religious backgrounds, documents of the late Roman, Germanic, Anglo-Norman, Mediterranean, Byzantine, Slavic, Jewish and Islamic identities are all included. The book's chapters are organized according to nine areas—the Bible; Christian thought; chronicles; law; biology, medicine and science; literature; witchcraft and heresy; Judaism; and Islam—allowing for comparative examination of different societies and periods of the Middle Ages.
|3||Early church fathers||23|
|4||Reformers, scholastics, and preachers||38|
|7||Early church and Germanic peoples||77|
|8||Continental Europe, the British Isles and Ireland||85|
|9||Russia and the Byzantine Empire||98|
|12||A university record||137|
|V||Biology, medicine, and science|
|13||Understanding male and female||141|
|14||Sexual activity and reproduction||147|
|17||Riddles, songs and stories||192|
|VII||Witchcraft and heresy|
|27||Islamic religion and law||283|
|28||Islamic culture and history||296|