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The Medieval World

The Medieval world was a distinctive one, rich in change and diversity. Here, for the first time, these disparate worlds emerge as one medieval world, stretching from Connacht to Constantinople and from Tynemouth to Timbuktu. This extraordinary set of reconstructions presents the reader with the future of the medieval past, offering fresh appraisals of the evidence and modern historical writing. Articles are thematically linked in four sections, exploring identities in the medieval world; beliefs, social values and symbolic order; power and power-structures; and elites, organisations and groups. This set of views from multiple perspectives conveys the liveliness of current approaches to studies in the field, and is an indispensable companion to anyone studying medieval history.
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Table of Contents

1. Introduction I. Identities: Selves and Others 2. Courts in East and West, Jonathan Shepard; 3. At the Spanish Frontier, Peter Linehan; 4. Muslims in Christian Iberia, 1000-1526, David Nirenberg; 5. How many Medieval Europes? The 'pagans' of Hungary and regional diversity in Christendom, Nora Berend; 6. Christians, Barbarians and Monsters. The European discovery of the world beyond Islam, Peter Jackson; 7. The Establishment of Medieval Hermeticism, Charles Burnett; 8. What the Crusades meant to Europe, Christopher Tyerman; 9. The Crusades and the Persecution of Jews, Jack Watt; 10. Strange Eventful Histories; the Middle Ages in the cinema, Stuart Airlie. II. Beliefs, Social Values and Symbolic Order 11. Political Rituals and Political Imagination in the Medieval West from the 4th Century to the 12th, Philippe Buc; 12. Modern Mythologies of Medieval Chivalry, Dominique Barthelemy; 13. The Unique Favour of Penance: the Church and the People, c.800-c.1100, Sarah Hamilton; 14. Gender Negotiations in France during the Middle Ages; the literary evidence, Linda Paterson; 15. Symbolism and medieval religious thought, David d'Avray; 16. Sexuality in the Middle Ages, Ruth Mazo Karras; 17. Sin, Crime and the Pleasures of the Flesh; the medieval Church judges sexual offences, James Brundage; 18. Through a Glass Darkly: seeing medieval heresy, Peter Biller; 19. The Corpse in the Middle Ages: the problem of the division of the body, Agostino Paravicini Bagliani; 20. The Crucifixion and the Censorship of Art around 1300, Paul Binski. III. Power and Power-structures 21.Space, Culture and Kingdoms in Early Medieval Europe, Paul Fouracre; 22. The Outward Look: Britain and Beyond in medieval Irish literature, Maire Ni Mhaonaigh; 23. Powerul Women in the early Middle Ages; queens and abbesses, Pauline Stafford; 24. Perceptions of an Early Medieval Urban Landscape, Christina La Rocca; 25. Assembly Politics in Western Europe from the 8th Century to the 12th, Timothy Reuter; 26. Beyond the Comune: the Italian city-state and its inheritance, Mario Ascheri; 27. Timbuktu and Europe: trade, cities and Islam in 'medieval' West Africa, Timothy Insoll; 28. Medieval Law, Susan Reynolds; 29. Rulers and Justice, 1200-1500, Magnus Ryan; 30. The King's Counsellors' Two Faces: a Portuguese perspective, Maria Joao Branco; 31. Fullness of Power? Popes, bishops, and the polity of the Church 1215-1517, James Burns. IV. Elites, Organisations and Groups 32. A new legal cosmos: Late Roman Lawyers and the Early Medieval Church, Caroline Humfress; 33. Medieval Monasticism, Janet L. Nelson; 34. Aspects of the Early Medieval Peasant Economy as revealed in the Polyptych of Prum, Yoshiki Morimoto; 35. Privilege in Medieval Societies from the twelfth to the fourteenth century, or: How the exception proves the rule, Alain Boureau; 36. What does the Twelfth-Century Renaissance mean?, Jacques Le Goff; 37. The English Parish and its Clergy in the Thirteenth Century, C.H.Lawrence; 38. Everyday Life and Elites in the later Middle Ages: the civilised and the barbarian, Gabor Klaniczay; 39. On 1500, Elizabeth A.R.Brown


To help reconstruct the medieval period for the contemporary reader, Linehan (History and the Historians of Medieval Spain) and Nelson (The Frankish World, 750-900) have enlisted contributions from 38 scholars, who come from Europe and Japan as well as the United States. Underrepresented, according to the editors themselves, are economic and German history, the latter owing to the lack of German historians among the contributors. The contributions are grouped thematically into four sections. The first section examines the coexistence of various identities as it tracks the differences and interactions between Orthodox East and Catholic West and among Christians, Muslims, Jews, and pagans. The second section's theme is the symbolic universe that existed for these peoples the beliefs and societal values, the role of ritual, and the relations between the sexes. The third part looks at power relationships and the organizational structure that generated power, while the fourth considers the roles played by distinct groups, both elite and nonelite. These range from an examination of an English parish and its clergy to the role of Roman lawyers in easing the transition from a pre-Christian to a Christian world. This compilation of essays will be of interest to both scholars and students of the Middle Ages and is recommended for academic libraries. Robert J. Andrews, Duluth P.L., MN Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

'The editors should be toasted for having distilled something of the lively spirit and substance of their subject into a single, concentrated product. Those with a taste, whether refined or modest, for the Middle Ages are urged to partake.' - History Today'A rich and exemplary picture of contemporary issues, debates and approaches ... fresh, well-written, and intelligently presented ... invaluable not only to scholars and students of history, but to anyone who has ever wondered at the Middle Ages and its continuing hold on our imagination.' - Professor Patrick Geary, University of California, USA

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