He Is the Sun, She Is the Moon: Women in Early Modern Germany / Edition 1

He Is the Sun, She Is the Moon: Women in Early Modern Germany / Edition 1

by Heide Wunder
     
 

ISBN-10: 0674383214

ISBN-13: 9780674383210

Pub. Date: 08/28/1998

Publisher: Harvard University Press

Renowned German social historian Heide Wunder refers to the cosmic image contained in the 1578 Book of Marital Discipline that characterizes the relationship between husband and wife. Today, "He is the sun, she is the moon" might be interpreted as a hierarchy of dominance and subordination. At the time it was used, however, sun and moon reflected the

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Overview

Renowned German social historian Heide Wunder refers to the cosmic image contained in the 1578 Book of Marital Discipline that characterizes the relationship between husband and wife. Today, "He is the sun, she is the moon" might be interpreted as a hierarchy of dominance and subordination. At the time it was used, however, sun and moon reflected the different but equal status of husband and wife.

Wunder shows how the history of women and the history of gender relations can provide crucial insights into how societies organize themselves and provide resources for political action. She observes actual circumstances as well as the normative rules that were supposed to guide women's lives. We learn what skills were necessary to take charge of households, what people ate, how they furnished their homes, what birth control measures were available, what role women played in peasant protest. Wunder finds that, in addition to the history of losses and setbacks for women observed by so many current interpreters, there is a history of gains as well. The regency of noble women was normal, as was the shared responsibility of wife and husband in a peasant household, an artisan's workshop, or a merchant's business.

Using sources as diverse as memoirs, wedding and funeral sermons, novels, and chronicles, and including a wealth of demographic information, Wunder reveals a surprising new image of early modern women and provides a richer interpretation of early modern Europe.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674383210
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
08/28/1998
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
5.92(w) x 9.22(h) x 0.98(d)

Table of Contents

Preface: Women in the History of Early Modern Europe

Women's Lives, Life Stories, and History in the Early Modern Period

The Stages of a Woman's Life: The Course of Life and Life Stories

Marriage: Keeping House and Making a Living

Work and Life Become Family-Based

Professionalization, Experience, and Common Sense

"The Lord Have Mercy on All Pregnant Women": The Female Body as Destiny?

"Single and Unattached": Maids and Widows

"Evil" Women: Sorceresses and Witches

Gynarchy—Women in Charge

Women's Courage: Pious Women, Rebellious Women

Women's Rights, Civic Rights, Human Rights: Emancipation and Coming of Age in the Age of Englightenment and Revolution?

He Is the Sun, She Is the Moon

Notes

References

Index

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