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Courtly Love, the Love of Courtliness, And the History of Sexuality (Hardcover)

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Product Overview

What can the study of courtly love and the history of sexuality learn from each other? In "Courtly Love, the Love of Courtliness, and the History of Sexuality," James A. Schultz draws on key texts from the German tradition to explore the answers to this question.
From the history of sexuality, Schultz shows, one learns to be suspicious of modern assumptions about the male and female body, the origin of desire, and the categories of sexuality. He finds that courtly love is not provoked by sex difference or an intrinsic desire but by extrinsic signs of class status: bodies that are visibly noble and behaviors that manifest exemplary courtliness.
From the study of courtly love the history of sexuality can come to terms with a topic it has generally ignored but that represents nevertheless one of the most consequential medieval discourses on bodies and their pleasures, an object of fascination to contemporaries and an influence on European thinking about love for centuries. Compared to other “ sexualities, ” courtly love exhibits an extraordinary congruence with social forms. It manifests itself as courtly discipline, through rituals of welcome or knightly service. It promises not only the joy of lovemaking but also the distinction that accrues to those who have mastered the disciplines of courtliness. It represents the eroticization of noble status and courtly culture: the love of courtliness.


Publisher Univ of Chicago Pr
Mfg Part# 9780226740898
SKU 202246258
Format Hardcover
ISBN10 0226740897
Release Date 8/1/2006
Product Attributes
Book Format Hardcover
Number of Pages 0242
Publisher University of Chicago Press
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