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Identity Begins at Home: Female Conduct and the Failure of Counsel in Le Menagier de Paris

Identity Begins at Home: Female Conduct and the Failure of Counsel in Le Menagier de Paris Chapter 2 : Female Conduct and the Failure of Counsel in Le Menagier de Paris Hamilton College Shaping Conduct in Medieval France In his classic study of the history of European manners, Norbert Elias represents the Middle Ages as a rather badly behaved society from which a more refined Renaissance emerges. Although he recognizes the role of "courtoisie" in the evolution of European sociability, Elias portrays medieval society as rougher, more prone to extreme displays of emotion, less restrained by a sense of bodily shame, and less interested in controlling behavior.1 Not until the sixteenth century, with the publication of Erasmus's De civilitate morum puerilium does a program of consciously inculcated physical restraint, self-control, and refined expression emerge. Drawing on a limited sample of books of table manners and courtesy, Elias presents medieval manuals as comparatively simple enumerations of stock precepts that remained unchanged for centuries. In contrast, the Renaissance treatises of Erasmus, Castiglione, and della Casa are deemed more sophisticated creations from an era when "people mold themselves and others more deliberately than in the Middle Ages" (79). A sociologist rather than a medieval historian, Elias conceded that "a closer study" of nuances and differences of medieval http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Essays in Medieval Studies West Virginia University Press

Identity Begins at Home: Female Conduct and the Failure of Counsel in Le Menagier de Paris

Essays in Medieval Studies , Volume 22 (1)

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Publisher
West Virginia University Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 Illinois Medieval Association.
ISSN
1538-4608
Publisher site
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Abstract

Chapter 2 : Female Conduct and the Failure of Counsel in Le Menagier de Paris Hamilton College Shaping Conduct in Medieval France In his classic study of the history of European manners, Norbert Elias represents the Middle Ages as a rather badly behaved society from which a more refined Renaissance emerges. Although he recognizes the role of "courtoisie" in the evolution of European sociability, Elias portrays medieval society as rougher, more prone to extreme displays of emotion, less restrained by a sense of bodily shame, and less interested in controlling behavior.1 Not until the sixteenth century, with the publication of Erasmus's De civilitate morum puerilium does a program of consciously inculcated physical restraint, self-control, and refined expression emerge. Drawing on a limited sample of books of table manners and courtesy, Elias presents medieval manuals as comparatively simple enumerations of stock precepts that remained unchanged for centuries. In contrast, the Renaissance treatises of Erasmus, Castiglione, and della Casa are deemed more sophisticated creations from an era when "people mold themselves and others more deliberately than in the Middle Ages" (79). A sociologist rather than a medieval historian, Elias conceded that "a closer study" of nuances and differences of medieval

Journal

Essays in Medieval StudiesWest Virginia University Press

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