Forgetful of Their Sex

By Jane Tibbetts Schulenberg,

Book cover of Forgetful of Their Sex: Female Sanctity and Society, Ca. 500-1100

Book description

Despite religious claims of a spiritual egalitarianism in the heavenly kingdom, there was a definite tendency in the Middle Ages to organize the celestial realm according to the established customs, values, and hierarchy of earthly society. In this study of over 2500 female and male saints, Jane Schulenburg explores women's…

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Why read it?

1 author picked Forgetful of Their Sex as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

This brilliant piece of scholarship examines thousands of early medieval saints to paint a picture of a particular form of life for medieval women that allowed them in some ways to transcend their gender – to “forget their sex”. Early medieval women could be recognized for their sanctity and social contributions through their commitment to virginity, but also as mothers, nuns, siblings, and friends. Schulenberg is particularly attentive to how gender operated in the saints’ lives and tells marvelous stories about real human beings.

From Miriam's list on medieval women’s history.

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