Vernacular Bodies the Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England pdf

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Vernacular Bodies the Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England by Mary E. Fissell pdf download

Vernacular Bodies the Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England by Mary E. Fissell pdf download. Women’s bodies are the stuff of history. In early modern England, those bodies gave birth to babies, nursed them, cooked the dinners, milked the cows, and spun the yarn. This book argues that women’s bodies are the stuff of history in a second way. Men’s bodies, after all, plowed the fields, ground grain into flour, and sheared the sheep. But only women’s bodies had the power to make new life.

Vernacular Bodies the Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England by Mary E. Fissell pdf download

Such power was the source of much speculation. Sixteenth- and seventeenth-century people had no sex-education diagrams, no ovulationpredictor test kits, no ultrasound scans. Many facts we take for granted were open to debate: did women always need men to make babies? why did children often (but not always) look like their parents? could a fetus change its sex within the womb?

Vernacular Bodies the Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England by Mary E. Fissell pdf download

Since little was certain about the mysteries of reproduction, the topic lent itself to a rich array of theories. The insides of women’s reproductive bodies provided a kind of open interpretative space, a place where many different models of reproductive processes might be plausible. These models were profoundly shaped by cultural concerns; they afforded many ways to discuss and make sense of social, political, and economic changes.

Vernacular Bodies the Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England by Mary E. Fissell pdf download

And early modern English men and women experienced wrenching changes, such as the Protestant Reformation and the Civil War. Both of these, I argue, made their mark on ordinary people’s ideas about women’s reproductive bodies. It is not just that models of the body reflect historical change. Rather, men and women thought through the body, using ideas about reproduction as a kind of imaginative resource to understand and to justify their changing circumstances.

Vernacular Bodies the Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England by Mary E. Fissell pdf download

Vernacular Bodies the Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern England by Mary E. Fissell pdf download


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