IMC 2019: Sessions

Session 710: Women and the Natural World in Medieval Literature, III: Water

Tuesday 2 July 2019, 14.15-15.45

Organisers:Olivia Colquitt, Department of English, University of Liverpool
Sarah-Nelle Jackson, Department of English, University of British Columbia
Moderator/Chair:Sarah-Nelle Jackson, Department of English, University of British Columbia
Paper 710-aPearl Fishing: Bestiary Oyster as Marian Sacred Womb
(Language: English)
Diane Heath, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Studies (MEMS), University of Kent
Diane Heath, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Studies (MEMS), University of Kent
Diane Heath, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Studies (MEMS), University of Kent
Index terms: Architecture - Religious, Gender Studies, Language and Literature - French or Occitan, Lay Piety
Paper 710-bMotherhood at Sea in Medieval Romance
(Language: English)
Kirsty A. S. Bolton, Centre for Medieval & Renaissance Culture / Department of English, University of Southampton
Kirsty A. S. Bolton, Centre for Medieval & Renaissance Culture / Department of English, University of Southampton
Kirsty A. S. Bolton, Centre for Medieval & Renaissance Culture / Department of English, University of Southampton
Index terms: Gender Studies, Language and Literature - Middle English, Women's Studies
Paper 710-cBodies of Water: Mapping the Mother in Mélusine
(Language: English)
Olivia Colquitt, Department of English, University of Liverpool
Olivia Colquitt, Department of English, University of Liverpool
Olivia Colquitt, Department of English, University of Liverpool
Index terms: Gender Studies, Language and Literature - French or Occitan, Women's Studies
Abstract

The third session in our series focuses on the primordial connections between motherhood and water. Through ecocritical approaches to early bestiary accounts of the oyster and her pearl, we may gain an understanding of medieval conceptions of sacred feminine bodies and places. The sea of medieval romance is vast, perilous, and unpredictable: here, maternal resilience is put to the test as exiled queens must protect their children from the unbridled power of the elements. By contrast, Mélusine’s symbiotic relationship with water disseminates her dynastic influence across the realm, empowering her role as mother and founder of the House of Lusignan.