Tuesday, May 12, 2009

New Videocast: The Clothing of Courtly Love


In this seventh episode of De Amore: On Love with Brikena Ribaj, I discuss the idea that many medieval characters, male and female, are not inflected for gender. I refer to such works as Parzival and Erec. Our understanding of how gender worked in the Middle Ages might just shed some light on the different forms of gender expressions we encounter in modernity.

You can view the episode here.






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hhttp://farm1.static.flickr.com/80/244976012_d84400c10c.jpg

7 comments:

JJ said...

It's really mind-boggling that male/female characters are not inflected for gender.
You refer to a gender-marking when the characters enter spaces like a church, the royal court, and so forth. What do such structures add to 'gender'?

JJ said...

It's really mind-boggling that male/female characters are not inflected for gender.
You refer to a gender-marking when the characters enter spaces like a church, the royal court, and so forth. What do such structures add to 'gender'?

Becca said...

So, the noble medievals saw love as self-reflection.
In modernity, we'd call this narcissism. I tend to call it truth. Loving that which validates and reflects you seems pretty logical to me.
I liked this. Where was the photo taken?

B.R. said...

Because such structures as churches or the Arthurian court are the ones that inflect for gender. When out in the open, male and female characters are not marked for gender. They are equally beautiful. So, it's not that such structures add to gender, they plainly gender.
-The phone is from google image. I wanted to find a graph that epitomized a kind of androgyny I would approve of. I settled on this.

Nicki said...

I wish that gender inflection would fall out of use. The medievals knew their stuff.

liam said...

1) thank you for mentioning the relative newness of strict sexual identity. obviously homosexual and heterosexual behaviours occurred prior to the 20th century, but there wasn't a particular rule set upon which to classify people, which i think probably left a lot more minds open to opportunity and individual tendencies.

2) i enjoy literature and text with a certain vagueness about the character, as with the nameless characters in once. it allows the reader to focus on other traits more, instead of relying on learned presumptions.

3) your wardrobe choice for this piece seems especially relevant.

Dana said...

I also find it peculiar that 'gender' makes so many people anxious. It's a fascinating, social text and the fact that the medievals were so unmaking of it, for a good part of their existence, should teach us a thing or two.
I also like the clothing presentation. Not by chance, I would submit. ;)