Community, society and memory in late medieval nunneries

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2021
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Zusammenfassung

The question of what held functionally differentiated societies together was one of the key concerns that drove the nascent social sciences in the late nineteenth century. Whereas the term society did not imply personal attachment, the idea of community, by contrast, was thought to be rooted in belonging and togetherness, and hence in emotions. In the social world of medieval monasticism community and society were interwoven in myriad ways. Over time, the lines that connected them, both discursively and praxeologically, shifted in unison with changes to their ascribed meanings. My study is divided into three parts, in each of which practices of commemorating the dead are connected to issues of gender and kinship. In the first section, I will focus on the Revelations of Gertrud the Great, in order to draw attention to the eschatological and anthropological foundations of memorial practice. The second section will focus on anniversary endowments that are documented in monastic charters and seek to establish the extent to which they offered leeway to tailor commemoration. The third section will focus on the same question, but use a single necrology as a starting point. The chronological focus will rest primarily, but not solely, on the fourteenth century, which in many respects marks a turning point in the history of the ever-changing, always gendered relationship between the individual, community and society.

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900 Geschichte
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Female monasticism; community/togetherness; remembrance of the dead; refectory; life annuity; bequests
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ISO 690SIGNORI, Gabriela, 2021. Community, society and memory in late medieval nunneries. In: History and Anthropology. Taylor & Francis. 2021, 32(2), pp. 231-248. ISSN 0275-7206. eISSN 1477-2612. Available under: doi: 10.1080/02757206.2021.1905245
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@article{Signori2021Commu-54635,
  year={2021},
  doi={10.1080/02757206.2021.1905245},
  title={Community, society and memory in late medieval nunneries},
  number={2},
  volume={32},
  issn={0275-7206},
  journal={History and Anthropology},
  pages={231--248},
  author={Signori, Gabriela}
}
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