Session306
TitleNoblewomen Network, III: Heiresses, Agency, and Expressions of Authority
Date/TimeMonday 4 July 2022: 16.30-18.00
 
SponsorNoblewomen Network
 
OrganiserHarriet Kersey, Research Development, Canterbury Christ Church University
Charlotte Pickard, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, Open University / 'Exploring the Past Pathway', Cardiff University
 
Moderator/ChairHarriet Kersey, Research Development, Canterbury Christ Church University
 
Paper 306-a The Power and Authority of Norman Noblewomen, 1010-1160: The Charter Evidence
(Language: English)
Sarah Fry, Department of History, University of Winchester
Index Terms: Charters and Diplomatics; Genealogy and Prosopography; Women's Studies
Paper 306-b Heiresses and Their Choices during Succession Disputes in 13th-Century France
(Language: English)
Charlotte Crouch, The National Archives, Kew
Index Terms: Charters and Diplomatics; Politics and Diplomacy; Women's Studies
Paper 306-c Exceptionally Unexceptional?: The Political Career of Isabella, Countess of Fife, d. 1389
(Language: English)
Rachel Meredith Davis, Centre for History, University of the Highlands & Islands / School of Humanities, Social Sciences and Law, University of Dundee
Index Terms: Charters and Diplomatics; Politics and Diplomacy; Women's Studies
 
AbstractSince the latter part of the 20th century there has been a great expansion in scholarship centred on women and their place in medieval society. This strand of sessions aims to bring together scholars working on medieval noblewomen - to build on and develop the discourse that has developed over the past few decades, with the continued aim of building a global network of scholars working in this vibrant area of research. Covering the lives of heiresses in both medieval England and France, our final session demonstrates the regularity in which noblewomen needed to actively defend their personal interests and rights. Using a wide range of sources from charters and material culture to marriage contracts, the papers in this session explore the subject of female agency and the strategies noble heiresses employed to protect their interests. It also discusses the choices these women made and the wider political implications of these decisions.