The New Middle Ages

Monstrosity, Disability, and the Posthuman in the Medieval and Early Modern World

Editors: Godden, Richard H., Mittman, Asa Simon (Eds.)

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  • Offers wide-ranging and interdisciplinary essays on medicine, literature, religion, art history, law, and ethics
  • Promotes a useful and important discussion about the vitality of disability studies within medieval and early modern studies
  • Breaks new ground through its specific examination of disability in relation to monstrosity during these periods
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About this book

This collection examines the intersection of the discourses of “disability” and “monstrosity” in a timely and necessary intervention in the scholarly fields of Disability Studies and Monster Studies. Analyzing Medieval and Early Modern art and literature replete with images of non-normative bodies, these essays consider the pernicious history of defining people with distinctly non-normative bodies or non-normative cognition as monsters. In many cases throughout Western history, a figure marked by what Rosemarie Garland-Thomson has termed “the extraordinary body” is labeled a “monster.” This volume explores the origins of this conflation, examines the problems and possibilities inherent in it, and casts both disability and monstrosity in light of emergent, empowering discourses of posthumanism.

About the authors

Richard H. Godden is Assistant Professor of English at Louisiana State University, USA, where he works on the representations of disability in medieval literature and culture.

Asa Simon Mittman is Professor of Art and Art History at California State University, Chico, USA, and author of several books and articles on monsters and marginality.

 


Reviews

“These essays give new directions and voices to the interrelated topics of monstrosity, disability, and the posthuman. Ranging widely across time and genre, from Grendel through the dog-headed St. Christopher, to Montaigne and Webster, the writers both provoke and inform us on how (teratological not Plinian) monstrosity and disability from birth or accident were understood in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. A compelling selection of visual images aids in understanding this intersection.” (John Block Friedman, Professor Emeritus of English and Medieval Studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA)
“This excellent collection presents essays from a variety of disciplines and deploys a range of theoretical approaches as it explores the categories in its title. The contributors also exploit the frictions among the categories, not only to define their differences but also to demonstrate how—or whether—monstrosity and disability might meaningfully intersect in formulations of the posthuman. The nuanced treatments of the topics in this volume create remarkable and often unexpected synergies that will challenge and reward its readers.” (Edward Wheatley, Professor of English, Loyola University Chicago, USA)

 

Table of contents (15 chapters)

Table of contents (15 chapters)
  • Embodied Difference: Monstrosity, Disability, and the Posthuman

    Pages 3-31

    Godden, Richard H. (et al.)

  • From Monstrosity to Postnormality: Montaigne, Canguilhem, Foucault

    Pages 35-61

    Long, Kathleen Perry

  • “If in Other Respects He Appears to Be Effectively Human”: Defining Monstrosity in Medieval English Law

    Pages 63-83

    Buhrer, Eliza

  • (Dis)functional Faces: Signs of the Monstrous?

    Pages 85-105

    Cock, Emily (et al.)

  • Grendel and Goliath: Monstrous Superability and Disability in the Old English Corpus

    Pages 107-126

    Bruce Wallace, Karen

Buy this book

eBook $89.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-25458-2
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $119.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-030-25457-5
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Monstrosity, Disability, and the Posthuman in the Medieval and Early Modern World
Editors
  • Richard H. Godden
  • Asa Simon Mittman
Series Title
The New Middle Ages
Copyright
2019
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-25458-2
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-25458-2
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-25457-5
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XXVII, 352
Number of Illustrations
19 b/w illustrations
Topics