Gender and Spirituality in the Renaissance: Teaching Women’s Religious Writings, 1300–1650, from Europe and the Americas
A special issue of Religions (ISSN 2077-1444).
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 October 2017) | Viewed by 34567
Interests: Late medieval and early modern Italy and Europe; particularly issues related to gender and religion; history of theatre; literature of 19th-century Sicily; the history and culture of Siena
While a great deal of work on women’s writing has appeared in the last ten-fifteen years, there is little in the field that pulls together the scholarship on the writing by and about female religious figures, as well as on religious writing by lay women. Nor are there many books that bring together work on women in Europe as well as in Asia and the Americas. This will be a comparative volume that features women’s religious writing across the continents, across religions, and across periods, with the specific focus of identifying innovative ways of teaching those works in a university or college course.
The aim of this volume is to bring together some of the most current and ground-breaking work on women’s spirituality as expressed through their poems, plays, treatises, autobiographies, and other creative work in the late medieval and early modern periods in Europe and the Americas. While there have been some important anthologies of essays on women’s religious writing in early modern Europe (Rabil and King’s Teaching Other Voices: Women and Religion in Early Modern Europe, 2007; Sylvia Brown’s Women and Radical Religion in Early Modern Europe, 2007) and monographs on women’s religious writing and activities in the Americas (e.g., Marilyn Westerkamp, 2011) and in Europe (e.g., Merry Weisner Hanks, 2007), I am unaware of recent attempts to bring together women’s ‘voices’ from Christian, Muslim, and Judaic traditions in the period spanning the birth of the vernacular in Europe, the banishing of Muslims from Spain, and the ‘discovery’ of the new world. In particular, with the stunning number of new translations in The Other Voice series, now at Toronto, ever more texts are available in English from this period, a number of which focus on women religious and/or women’s religious writings. It indeed seems high time to return to Rabil and King’s very effective 2007 volume—now ten years ago—in order to widen its scope and to update its range of women writers whose works are now available for teaching and scholarship in English.
Essays on single figures or texts will be welcome, as are comparative essays that undertake to frame questions about female spirituality and writing in light of more than one religious tradition or national focus. While we will consider essays on contemporary writings about female spirituality (e.g., hagiography), the focus will be on writings by both lay and religious women.
Prof. Dr. Jane Tylus
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