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Full-Text Articles in History

Imperatrix, Domina, Rex: Conceptualizing The Female King In Twelfth-Century England, Coral Lumbley Oct 2019

Imperatrix, Domina, Rex: Conceptualizing The Female King In Twelfth-Century England, Coral Lumbley

Medieval Feminist Forum: A Journal of Gender and Sexuality

This article draws on methods from transgender theory, historicist literary studies, and visual analysis of medieval sealing practices to show that Empress Matilda of England was controversially styled as a female king during her career in the early to mid twelfth century. While the chronicle Gesta Stephani castigates Matilda’s failure to engage in sanctioned gendered behaviors as she waged civil war to claim her inherited throne, Matilda’s seal harnesses both masculine and feminine signifiers in order to proclaim herself both king and queen. While Matilda’s transgressive gender position was targeted by her detractors during her lifetime, the ...


Demonic Pedagogy And The Teaching Saint: Voice, Body, And Place In Cynewulf's Juliana, Christina M. Heckman May 2019

Demonic Pedagogy And The Teaching Saint: Voice, Body, And Place In Cynewulf's Juliana, Christina M. Heckman

Medieval Feminist Forum: A Journal of Gender and Sexuality

In Cynewulf’s Old English poem Juliana, the saint frames her encounters with her adversaries as pedagogical confrontations, refusing the lessons they attempt to “teach” her and ultimately adopting the identity of a teacher herself. These confrontations depend on three key tropes in the poem: Juliana’s voice, as a material manifestation of language deployed by the saint; her body, both as living body and as relic; and place, especially the place of the saint’s martyrdom and/or burial. Viewed through theories of material feminism, these tropes reveal diverse forms of agency in the poem, as both human and ...