Session1620
TitleHagiography beyond Gender Essentialism, I: Trans and Genderqueer Sanctity - Rethinking the Status Quo
Date/TimeThursday 6 July 2017: 11.15-12.45
 
SponsorHagiography Society
 
OrganiserAlicia Spencer-Hall, School of Languages, Linguistics & Film, Queen Mary University of London
 
Moderator/ChairAlicia Spencer-Hall, School of Languages, Linguistics & Film, Queen Mary University of London
 
Paper 1620-a Medieval Trans Lives in Anamorphosis: A Pregnant Male Saint and Backward Birth
(Language: English)
Blake Gutt, Department of Romance Languages & Literatures, University of Michigan
Index Terms: Gender Studies; Hagiography; Religious Life; Women's Studies
Paper 1620-b Imitating Saints' Transgressive Genders
(Language: English)
Amy V. Ogden, Department of French Language & Literature, University of Virginia
Index Terms: Gender Studies; Hagiography; Religious Life; Women's Studies
Paper 1620-c Cistercian Nuns and Monks and the Limits on Gender Fluidity around the Year 1200
(Language: English)
Martha Newman, Department of History / Department of Religious Studies, University of Texas, Austin
Index Terms: Gender Studies; Hagiography; Religious Life; Theology
 
AbstractHagiography is all too often assumed to be a place where gender essentialism festers, complete with claustrophobic gender roles. However, numerous scholars, such as Caroline Walker Bynum and Leslie Feinberg, have shown that saints routinely challenged the options offered to them by the gender binary. Saints could, and did, cross-dress; live as a gender other to which they were assigned at birth; and modulate their identity by blending traits traditionally coded as male and female. This panel seeks to develop the important work of these scholarly forebears, rethinking our current approaches to trans and genderqueer sanctity in the Middle Ages.