Holy Motherhood: Gender, Dynasty And Visual Culture In The Later Middle Ages (Manchester Medieval Studies MUP)
Holy motherhood: Gender, dynasty and visual culture in the later middle ages (Manchester Medieval Studies MUP)
This study brings images of holy motherhood and childbearing into the centre of an art-historical enquiry, showing how images worked not only to script and maintain gender and social roles within patriarchal society, but also to offer viewers ways of managing those roles. Some of the manuscripts discussed are relatively unknown and their images and texts are made available to readers for the first time.
Through an adaptation of Baxandall's 'period eye', the study considers the many 'cognitive habits' acquired by aristocratic lay women - and men - through familiarity with prayers for childbirth, the lying-in ceremony, and the rite of churching. It then uses this methodology to interpret the images and prayers in six bespoke manuscripts, including the Fitzwilliam Hours and the Hours of Marguerite of Foix.
The book will appeal to advanced students, academics and researchers of Art History, Illuminated Manuscripts, Medieval History and Gender Studies.
"The intersection of gender, social practice, and feminine agency underpins much of this literature. Elizabeth L'Estrange makes an important contribution not only to these debates, but to the fields of medieval art...