Christianities Before Modernity

Series introduction

Nativity, Gondarine Sensul; Ethiopian, late seventeenth century. The Walters Gallery: Walters Manuscript 36.10, f. 2r.

Nativity, Gondarine Sensul; Ethiopian, late seventeenth century. The Walters Gallery: Walters Manuscript 36.10, f. 2r.

Challenging the perception of Christianity as a unified and European religion before the sixteenth century, this series interrogates the traditional chronological, geographical, social and institutional boundaries of premodern Christianity. Books in this series seek to rebuild the lived experiences and religious worlds of understudied people as well as landmark disputes and iconic figures by recovering underappreciated vernacular sources, situating localized problems and mundane practices within broader social contexts and addressing questions framed by contemporary theoretical and methodological conversations. Christianities Before Modernity embraces an interdisciplinary and comparative approach, publishing on history, literature, music, theater, classics, folklore, art history, archaeology, religious studies, philosophy, gender studies, anthropology, sociology and other areas. Grounded in original sources and informed by ongoing disciplinary disputes, this series demonstrates how premodern Christians comprised diverse and conflicted communities embedded in a religiously diverse world.

Keywords: Christianity, history of religions, longue durée, theory and method of medieval studies, global Middle Ages, inter‐connectivity, late antiquity, medieval and early modern studies.

Geographical Scope: Afro‐Eurasia and the Atlantic World

Chronological Scope: Medieval and Early Modern

Series editors and advisory board

Shannon CunninghamTo submit a proposal or completed manuscript to be considered for publication by Medieval Institute Publications or to learn more about the series, contact Shannon Cunningham, acquisitions editor for the series.

The series' Advisory Board comprises:

  • Rabia Gregory, University of Missouri, Columbia, USA, Series Editor
  • Kathleen E. Kennedy, Pennsylvania State University, Brandywine, USA, Series Editor
  • Susanna A. Throop, Ursinus College, USA, Series Editor
  • Charlene Villaseñor, UCLA, USA, Series Editor
  • Adnan A. Husain, Queen's University, Canada
  • István Perczel, Central European University, Hungary
  • Eyal Poleg, Queen Mary University of London, England
  • Carl S. Watkins, Magdalene College, Cambridge, England

Forthcoming in this series

Women, Ethnicity, and Identity in the Early Syriac Church

Catherine Burris

This is the first full-length study of women in the early Syriac church.  It offers an analysis of the place of Syriac women in the church, and in doing so identifies the ways that one minority tradition struggled to identify itself.  Relying mostly on narrative accounts of female saints and martyrs, it distinguishes between ecclesiastical and devotional interests, and argues that the representation of women in Syriac texts offers a view of Christians on the social and ecclesiastical periphery.

The Reception and Use of Monastic Literature: Text Creation and Community Formation

Zachary B. Smith

This volume explores how Greek and Latin authors across the Mediterranean and Europe deployed related texts to form monastic communities in different veins. Using the Apophthegmata Patrum as an exemplar, Zachary B. Smith argues that late antique, early medieval, and Byzantine authors selectively utilized monastic sayings texts to form their particular monastic worlds.

The Language of Heresy in Late Medieval English Literature

By Erin K. Wagner

This book examines the way in which late medieval English writers complemented seemingly straightforward terms, like heretic, with a range of synonyms that complicated the definitions of both those words and orthodoxy itself. This text proposes four specific terms that become synonymous with heretic in the parlance of medieval English writers of the 14th and 15th centuries: jangler, Jew, Saracen, and witch.

Trauma and Recovery in Early North African Christianity

Scott David Harrower

Embedded within the texts of (1) The Scilitan martyrs, (2) The account of Montanus, Lucius, and their Companions, (3) The martyrdom of Marian and James, (4) and The martyrdom of Cyprian of Carthage there is a powerful guide for living in the aftermath of trauma. This book vividly demonstrates that such hagiographies played a vital role for helping trauma survivors recover and live in the aftermath of disaster.

Imagining Christian Japan: European Views from 1550 to 1900

By Jennifer Lynn Welsh

Using a range of European texts as well as Japanese texts in translation, this monograph argues that European constructions of Japan as a potentially Christian country shaped Western views from the early modern contact period through Japan’s Tokugawa-era isolation until the late nineteenth century.

 

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