Tuesday, December 06, 2016

A discovery: Ilan Mitchell-Smith's Between Mars and Venus: Balance and Excess in the chivalry of the late-medieval English romance

A friend of mine alerted me to the existence of a PhD dissertation (Texas A&M) on chivalry and masculinity. I have just had a quick look, but the dissertation touches on some subjects of great interest: for instance, medieval masculinity being more complex than a bipolar spectrum between more masculine and less. In particular, Mitchell-Smith argues that masculinity did not simply equate to violence. He also explores the difference between chivalric behavior and chivalric identity.

If you are interested, you can read the dissertation online.

Image: A less-obvious chivalric pursuit (but note the helm and the heraldry). From the Manesse Codex.

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