Metamorphosis and Identity
By (author) Caroline Walker Bynum
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Metamorphosis and Identity by Caroline Walker Bynum
Book DescriptionThe four studies in this book center on the Western obsession with the nature of personal identity. Focusing on the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, but with an eye toward antiquity and the present, Caroline Walker Bynum explores the themes of metamorphosis and hybridity in genres ranging from poetry, folktales, and miracle collections to scholastic theology, devotional treatises, and works of natural philosophy. She argues that the obsession with boundary-crossing and otherness was an effort to delineate nature's regularities and to establish a strong sense of personal identity, extending even beyond the grave. She examines historical figures such as Marie de France, Gerald of Wales, Bernard Clairvaux, Thomas Aquinas, and Dante, as well as modern fabulists such as Angela Carter, as examples of solutions to the perennial question of how the individual can both change and remain constant. Addressing the fundamental question for historians--that of change--Bynum also explores the nature of history writing itself.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9781890951238
(229mm x 152mm x 20mm)
Imprint: Zone Books
Publisher: Zone Books
Publish Date: 4-Oct-2005
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Caroline Walker Bynum
Christian Materiality, Paperback (October 2015)
Late Medieval Christianity's encounter with miraculous materials viewed in the context of changing conceptions of matter itself.
Resurrection of the Body, Paperback (April 1996)
Bynum examines several periods between the third and fourteenth centuries in which discussions of the body were central to Western eschatology, and suggests that Western attitudes toward the body that arose from these discussions still undergird our modern notions of the individual.
Fragmentation and Redemption, Paperback (November 1992)» View all books by Caroline Walker Bynum
Caroline Walker Bynum examines diverse medieval texts to show how women were able to appropriate dominant social symbols in ways that allowed for the emergence of their own creative voices.
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Author Biography - Caroline Walker Bynum
Caroline Walker Bynum is Professor of Medieval European History, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey, and University Professor Emerita at Columbia University. She is the author of Fragmentation and Redemption: Essays on Gender and the Human Body in Medieval Religion and Metamorphosis and Identity, both published by Zone Books.
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