Course: Woman in the Middle Ages

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Course title Woman in the Middle Ages
Course code KHI/QWMA
Organizational form of instruction Lecture + Seminary
Level of course Master
Year of study not specified
Semester Winter
Number of ECTS credits 5
Language of instruction English
Status of course Compulsory-optional
Form of instruction Face-to-face
Work placements This is not an internship
Recommended optional programme components None
Course availability The course is available to visiting students
  • Stejskal Jan, doc. Mgr. M.A., Ph.D.
Course content
Program of lectures 1) Woman in History, Gender studies. Defining the the theme. Historiography of the theme (since 19th century) 2) Problems of medieval "gender studies". Development and the state of the research. Medieval women in the sources (the absence of an authentic women's testimony in the sources). 3) The position of women in the ancient Roman society. Women and Judaism. Women and Christianity. 4) Medieval society ? its standards and their development. The Church and the control of the society. The "nature of a woman" - a woman under protection. Women "good and bad". 5) Family and society in the early middle ages. Family and society in the late middle ages (Italy, Burgundy). The court and its culture. 6) Image of women. Women depicted. 7) Women in their own words. Women in the literature. The problem of authenticity of the sources. 8) Medieval household. Labor division in the terms of gender. Education of children. "Gender segregation". 9) Medieval feminine mysticism and its significance. 10) Developments in the Central Europe. Specifics of the region. Questions of "cultural delay". Women in the Hussite movement. 11) "Case studies" - Eve, Virgin Mary, Sarah, Heloise, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Hildegard of Bingen, Agnes of Bohemia, Catherine of Siena, Christine de Pisan Tento kurz vznikl v rámci projektu Inovace studia Historických věd na Univerzitě Palackého, reg. č. CZ.1.07/2.2.00/28.0025

Learning activities and teaching methods
Monologic Lecture(Interpretation, Training), Dialogic Lecture (Discussion, Dialog, Brainstorming)
  • Attendace - 18 hours per semester
  • Semestral Work - 100 hours per semester
  • Preparation for the Exam - 7 hours per semester
Learning outcomes
The semester course is open to all PU students. Course gives a comprehensive overview of the current research in the field of medieval Gender Studies and (especially) in Women Studies. The subject will be approached from a comparative point of view: the everyday life, in terms of narrative and visual sources. The cult of saints - a specific phenomenon of the middle ages and its models, will play pivotal role within the course. Particular attention will be paid to the female monasticism and mysticism in particular. The course will focus on the normative statements of the Church Fathers, concerning the status of women and the texts written by women themselves reflect their own fate.
Students will acquire knowledge of the current research in the field of medieval Gender Studies and (especially) in Women Studies.
The optional lectures will be held once a week. Recommended reading can be continuously updated during the semester. The willingness for the self-study of the recommended literature is assumed.

Assessment methods and criteria
Written exam

Lectures are optional, therefore the participation in them is not required to obtain the certification, but it is strongly recommended. Students are expected to study the reading assignements which are chosen in order to help students to get oriented in the class topics. Final colloquium will be held in the form of a written test. Students must achieve 75% success rate for successful completion of the test. Questions will be based on the issues presented during the lectures in combination with recommended reading.
Recommended literature
  • Bitel, L. (2002). Women in early medieval Europe, 400-1100 . Cambridge.
  • Duby, G. - Aries, P. (1999). A History of Private Life II.. London.
  • Furlong, M. Visions and Longings. Medieval Women Mystics. Boston 1996.
  • Herlihy, D. Medieval Households.Cambridge and London 1995.
  • Petroff, E. A. Body and Soul. Essays on medieval Women and Mysticism. Oxford 1994.
  • Schaus, M. (2006). Women and gender in medieval Europe : an encyclopedia . New York .
  • Ward, J. (2002). Women in medieval Europe, 1200-1500 . London New York .

Study plans that include the course
Faculty Study plan (Version) Branch of study Category Recommended year of study Recommended semester
Faculty of Arts History (2012) History courses - -
Faculty of Arts History (2012) History courses - -
Faculty of Arts Euroculture (2015) Philosophy, theology - -