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Byzantine Gender


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Table of Contents

Introduction 1 "Byzantine" People: Powerful Women & Wimpy Men 2 Medieval Roman Anthropology 3 Gender & Virtue 4 How did medieval Roman Women get so much done? 5 Masculinity & Military Strength 6 Change Over Time Conclusion Further Reading

About the Author

Leonora Neville studies Byzantine culture and society, and is the John W. and Jeanne M. Rowe Professor of Byzantine History at the University of Wisconsin Madison. Her work focuses on medieval history writing, authority, gender, and the importance of the classical past for Byzantine culture.


Byzantine Gender merits reading in print because its tone is conveyed in part through the format of the book, a slim, pocket-sized soft cover that fits in the palm of the hand. Like the Arc Humanities series generally, it presents itself as easily digestible and approachable, yet delivers serious engagement and rigorous thinking. Its one hundred pages of reasonably sized font can be read in a single sitting, recommending it as a supplemental text for a survey or topical lecture 866 Reviews course, or a seminar at the undergraduate or graduate level. [...] Recommended for "Byzantinists" interested in issues of gender-and for outsiders to the field who seek entry to these discussions-Byzantine Gender embraces a refreshingly idiosyncratic approach to the topic, and delivers it in an engagingly conversational style. Neville makes a compelling case for the fundamental importance of gender in the ongoing reappraisal of Byzantine history, and she highlights promising pathways toward a more accurate understanding of how gender identities shaped medieval Roman culture and society.

-- Alicia Walker * Speculum 96, no. 3 (2021): 866-69 *

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