Moral Combat : Women, Gender, and War in Italian Renaissance Literature

TitleMoral Combat : Women, Gender, and War in Italian Renaissance Literature
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsMilligan, Gerry
Number of Pages344
PublisherUniversity of Toronto Press
City, CountryToronto, Canada
Abstract

The Italian sixteenth century offers the first sustained discussion of women’s militarism since antiquity. Across a variety of genres, male and female writers raised questions about women’s right and ability to fight in combat. Moral Combat asks how and why women’s militarism became one of the central discourses of this age. Gerry Milligan discusses the armed heroines of biography and epic within the context of contemporary debates over women’s combat abilities and men’s martial obligations. Moral Combat ultimately argues that the popularity of the warrior woman in sixteenth-century Italian literature was due to her dual function of shame and praise: calling men to action and signaling potential victory to a disempowered people. [UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO PRESS]

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