Women’s Writers Exam 1

Women’s Writers Exam 1

Marie de France
Maybe half sister of Henry II
Abess of Saftsbury
Mentioned in Life of St. Edmund the King
Denis Piramis
BN 978 – France
Harley MS
Lai
Poetic/Musical Form
Troubadours/ troveres
Marie’s verse form: octosyllabic couplet
Breton Lai
short rhymed romance
Courtly Love
High social status
Adultery
Thwarted/Problematic
Physically Consummated
Norman Conquest
1066
William II of Normandy aka Willion the Conquerer
Family connection to Edward the Confessor (Anglo-Saxon king)
After Harold Goodwinson is defeated at Battle of Hastings Oct. 14, 1066
England is ruled by those who speak Anglo Norman
Bisclaveret
– Summary: Bisclaveret has a werewolf curse where he disappears for 3 days. His wife finds out and she orders the knight to steal his clothes. Bisclaveret stays a wereworlf and while his wife and the knight get married. The wereworlf goes to live with the king. The wife and knight visit the king and the werewolf attacks both. The werewold takes off his wife’s nose. The king finds out the truth about what happened. Bisclaveret is human again. All his wife’s daughters are born without noses.
– Clothing; marker of his humanity
– Clothing/identity
– Something recognizably human even when he was a werewolf
– Woman as betrayer
Lanval
– Summary: Lanval is King Arthur’s court. He is most loyal to King Arthur. He is sad and lonely until he meets this woman. She tells him that he cannot tell anyone about her. The king’s wife tries to seduce Lanval but he denies her. She accuses him of homosexuality. He then reveals his secret relationship and because of this he can no longer see his love. The queen lies on Lanval and lanval now has to go to court to defend himself and is threatened with being hung. They offer to let him free in court if his loves comes forth. She arrives and he is set free and they ride off together.
– Woman as hero
– Woman as objects: valuable, beauty
– Woman as evil – Guinevere
– Possession and Social Status
Yonec
– Summary: Woman marries a man who locks her away to prevent her from leaving. Man’s widowed sister acts as a guard to her room. She notices a hawk at the window and it turns into a knight saying that he has loved her for a long time but could not show himself until she called for him. She will not be with him unless he confesses he faith to God. The husband finds out about the knight and puts hard razors on the window. He leaves, she follows. He gives her a ring (erases husbands memory) and sword (so that son can kill husband). The husband forgets. They raise the son. He gets older and she tells him what happens and faints and dies. The sone beheads his step father.
– Sword (identity)
– Ring
– Tunic
– Cloth on Tomb
Le Fresne
– Summary: Woman has twins, and another womens scorns her saying that anyone who has twins must have slept with 2 men. Gossip spreads and everyone turns their back on the woman with twins. The other woman then becomes pregnant with twins herself and is scared she will be judged the same way. Her maid takes one of the babies away. Baby has a cloth and a ring. She grows up and falls in love. Her twin sister is in the running for the same guy. Their mother finds out who Le Fresne really is and allows her to marry her love.
Eliduc
Eliduc leaves to serve the king. A maiden falls in love with him. She sends him gifts. They have an affair. Eliduc returns home to his faithful wife but he is sad from leaving Guilliadun. He tries to go and get her to bring home with him. His wife finds out and asks to leave Eliduc.
Laustic
– Summary: Two nights live by each other. One man is in love with his neighbor’s wife and she loves him as well. They are never able to meet. They beginning getting up at night and looking at each other through the window. The lady’s husband becomes angry at the fact that she always gets up at night. He kills the bird. She can no longer get up at night. She sends the bird to the knight and he carries it with him forever.
Milan
– Summary: This girl falls in love with Milan and they begin to meet in secret. The girl becomes pregnant and tells Milan to take it to her sister and to not tell it the story until it is older so that it can decide whether to seek out his/her father. They hang around the baby’s neck the gold ring, a silk purse, and a letter. Milan leaves. He returns and sends a letter hidden the feathers of a swan. Milan meets his son in a joust.
Chaitivel
– Summary: Four knights wish to marry one girl. She leads all four of them on. The knights enter a tournament and 3 of them are killed. The woman is sad and the last knight alive cannot be her lover so he has to endure the heartache.
– The Unhappy One vs The Four Sorrows
St. Margaret
– Early 4th C (supposedly)
– Latino Greek versions of her life pre – 8th C
– Capture of Antioch 1098 (relics)
– Legend: saints life from Latin word for “to read”
– Legenda: things to be
– Furta Saora: theft of relics
Hagiography
– Saints lives
– Hagio = Holy
– Graphy = Writing
Classic Traits of hagiography
– Eyewitness narrator
– As in lais, little concern for physhological verisimiltude
– Miracles
– Martydom
– Reassurtions of eyewitness testimony
Similarities between St. Margaret & Cecilia
– Beauty- physically attractive
– Gentility, politeness/manners
– Noble bloodlines
– Perscuted for thier faith (religious minority)
– Virgins – commitement to live in chasitity
– Unconcerned with mortal bodies
– Physical manifestations of the supernatural
– Extended scenes of torture & saints miraculous survival
– Saints continue to profess faith during & after torture
– Conflict w/ male authority figure (husband, suitor, ruler, father)
– Reports of their prayers
Jocelyn Wagan – Browne, the “Virgins Tale” Paradigmn
– All plots are the same
– Young, beautiful, rich, noble, heroine
– Pagan father, absent mother
– Conflict w/ patriarchal authority figure over faith and disposition of female body (saints commitment to virginity vs. marriage/sexual access)
– Virginity = Christianity
– Torture as a spectacle: graphic detail, focus on visual elements of the female body
– Miraculous survival: often leads to scenes of mass conversion
Virgo
– Virago = Manly women
– Overcome innate inferiority (Virginity)
– Become more like men
– Virginity enabled women to become more like men, overcome innate physical, intellectual, and spiritual inferiority
Hiearchy of Merit
– Virginity: Best, 100 fold reward
– Chaste Widowhood: Better, 60 fold reward
– Marriage (if you obey all the rules): Good, 30 fold reward
St. Katherine
– Treatment of Marriage: More positive; still priviledges virginity, but marriage is not vilified
– Focus on devotional study and meditation: Katherine does what 15th century women are encouraged to do
– Treatment of material Goods: not rejected though the spiritual is priviledged, should be used properly (charity)
– Proper conduct: Not concerned with frivilous things. Be capable, but don’t crave too much power
– Reinforcement of clerical authority and importance of the sacraments: Threat to clerical authority of Lolla movement
– John Wyclif: Rejected transsubtaritiation, forced vernacular, translation of scripture
– Contrary interpretation: Katherine has the ability to study and interpret scripture independently, she knows and uses Latin
– Intellectual superiority of St. Katherine: rhetorical skills
– Successfully standing up to authority
Cecilia & Christine
– “Virgin Superpower”
– Indestructable
– Testiment to power of Christ as female purity
– Ability to convert large numbers through endurance of torture (virginal reproduction)
– Theological Knowledge/ability to refute arguments (ability to explain faith in sophistacted terms)
Christine de Pizan
– Italian
– Married at 15 to Estienne de Caskl
– B. 1365
– Widowed 1389 – had 3 young children
– Turned to writing as a living (one of the very first professional writers)
– Managed to get patronage on both sides
– Literary career long and distinguished: Particapant in “Querelle de la Rose”, several workds about the status of women, including City of Ladies
Julian of Norwich – Chapter 5
– Concept of homiliness
– Focus on Love
– Quantity of a hazelnut
– God’s Love
– 3 properties: God made, God loves it, God keeps it
– 3’s as an organizing principle: All fellow christians/avin christians
Julian of Norwich – Chapter 9
– All of the Doctrine of the church, reassuring readers of her orthodoxy
Julian of Norwich – Chapter 32
– Holy Trinity
– Believe what the church says and believe that God will make all things well
– Reassures readers
Julian of Norwich – Fatherhood
God 1st
Truth
Father wills
“In god the Father we have out being”
Julian of Norwich – Motherhood
Jesus 2nd
Wisdom
Mother works
“In jesus and the mother we have out reforming and restoring”
Julian of Norwich – Lordship
Holy Spirit 3rd
Goddness
Holy Spirit confirms
“In the holy spirit we have out fulfilling”
Julian of Norwich – Substance
– Out essential being
– The truth of what we are meant to be as whole person’s both body and soul
– Our substances is present
Julian of Norwich – Sensuality
Specifically human aspects of our being
– Only present in second person – Jesus because human, took on our nature (“kynde”)
Jesus as Mother
– Motherhood of “kynde” (first creation)
– Motherhood of grace (Christ becoming human)
– Motherhood of working (love)
Felix culpa
“happy fall”
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