Who Is Mary?
Three Early Modern Women on the Idea of the Virgin Mary
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Paperback / softback
Publisher: The University of Chicago Press
Number of Pages: 312
Width: 15.7 cm
Height: 22.7 cm
For women of the Italian Renaissance, the Virgin Mary was one of the most important role models. "Who Is Mary?" presents devotional works written by three women better known for their secular writings: Vittoria Colonna, famed for her Petrarchan lyric verse; Chiara Matraini, one of the most original poets of her generation; and the wide-ranging, intellectually ambitious polemicist Lucrezia Marinella. At a time when the cult of the Virgin was undergoing a substantial process of redefinition, these texts cast fascinating light on the beliefs of Catholic women in the Renaissance, and also, in the cases of Matraini and Marinella, on contemporaneous women's social behavior, prescribed for them by male writers in books on female decorum."Who Is Mary?" testifies to the emotional and spiritual relationships that women had with the figure of Mary, whom they were required to emulate as the epitome of femininity. Now available for the first time in English-language translation, these writings suggest new possibilities for women in both religious and civil culture and provide a window to women's spirituality, concerning the most important icon set before them, as wives, mothers, and Christians.
"'The Other Voice' series is a timely contribution to our understanding of the nature and extent of the participation of women and profeminist supporters in early modern European culture and society.... This series highlights the interest of early modern women's literary lives, allowing wives, sisters, and mothers to step out from the shadows and assume the place that is rightfully theirs on the literary stage." - Pollie Bromilow, Journal of European Studies"