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Author Undheim, Sissel, author

Title Borderline virginities : sacred and secular virgins in late antiquity / Sissel Undheim
Edition First [edition]
Published New York : Routledge, 2017
Online access available from:
ProQuest Ebook Central    View Resource Record  


Description 1 online resource
Contents Chapter 1 Introduction. Sancta virginitate: limits and border zones -- chapter 2 Roman virginities. Between rhetorics, ideals, and 2reality3 -- chapter 3 Ungendering virginity? Virginal paradoxes and paradoxical virginities -- chapter 4 De lapsu virginum consecratarum. Crime and punishment of fallen virgins
Summary "How and why did virginity come to play such a crucial part in the Christian Church in the formative and defining period of Late Antiquity? Sissel Undheim analyzes the negotiations over what constituted virginity and assesses its socio-religious value in fourth-century Rome by looking at those at the very margins of virginity and non-virginity. The Church Fathers' efforts to demarcate an exclusively Christian virginity, in contrast to the 'false virgins' of their pagan adversaries, displays a tension that, it is argued, played a larger role in the construction of a specifically Christian sacred virginity than previous studies have acknowledged. Late fourth-century Christian theologians' persistent appraisals of sacred virgins paved the way for a wide variety of virgins that often challenged the stereotype of the unmarried female virgin. The sources abound with seemingly paradoxical virgins, such as widow virgins, married virgins, virgin mothers, infant virgins, old virgins, heretical virgins, pagan virgins, male virgins, false virgins and fallen virgins. Through examining these kinds of 'borderline virgins' as they appear in a range of textual sources from varied genres, Undheim demonstrates how physical, cultural and cognitive boundaries of virginity were contested, drawn and redrawn in the fourth and early fifth centuries in the Latin West."--Provided by publisher
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references
Notes Print version record
Subject Church history -- Primitive and early church, ca. 30-600
Virginity -- Religious aspects -- Christianity -- History of doctrines -- Early church, ca. 30-600
Virgins -- Rome -- History
Church history -- Primitive and early church.
RELIGION -- Christian Life -- General.
Rome (Empire)
Genre/Form History.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 1315569736
1317173139 (electronic bk.)
9781315569734 (ebook)
9781317173137 (electronic bk.)