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IMC 2015: Sessions

Session 1032: Reform and Its Impact on Secular Society

Wednesday 8 July 2015, 09.00-10.30

Moderator/Chair:Kriston Rennie, School of Historical & Philosophical Inquiry, University of Queensland / Forschungsstelle für Vergleichende Ordensgeschichte (FOVOG), Technische Universität Dresden
Paper 1032-aThe Marital Law Reform and Its Consequences for Women at the End of the Middle Ages (Picardy)
(Language: English)
Julie Pilorget, Département d'histoire, Université Paris IV - Sorbonne
Index terms: Gender Studies, Law, Local History, Women's Studies
Paper 1032-bPraying for the King: The Old English Daniel and the Benedictine Reform
(Language: English)
Imogen Barratt, Department of English, University of Sydney
Index terms: Language and Literature - Old English, Religious Life

Paper -a:
According to Picard customary law, marriage created a unitary conjugal fund. Women were not passive agents but had the right to supervise the administration of the financial means they provided, as established in the marriage contract. But as the law was put in writing at the end of the Middle Ages, a reform led to a transition from an 'egalitarian system' to a 'lineal' regime which gave men firmer control of marital property. Here I analyze the example of Picardy, which is quite different from the example of Douai studied by Robert Jacob and Martha Howell. Roman law always influenced Picardy, and women’s rights were never as extensive as those of the Douaisiens. This paper will examine the reformation in marriage practices, providing a more nuanced picture of its consequences for women.

Paper -b:
This paper will address the prayers in the Old English Daniel poem, seeking to understand how the prayers fit with our understanding of monastic prayer around the time of the Benedictine Reform. I will evaluate the relationship of the poem and its manuscript context to the Benedictine Reform and discuss how the poet explores the themes of national repentance and intercession on behalf of the King. I will discuss these issues in light of the broader concerns of the Benedictine Reform and the culture of prayer in the 10th century.