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Medieval History

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Cover image for Illuminating women in the medieval world                Illuminating Women in the Medieval World

When one thinks of women in the Middle Ages, the images that often come to mind are those of damsels in distress, mystics in convents, female laborers in the field, and even women of ill repute. In reality, however, medieval conceptions of womanhood were multifaceted, and women's roles were varied and nuanced. Female stereotypes existed in the medieval world, but so too did women of power and influence. The pages of illuminated manuscripts reveal to us the many facets of medieval womanhood and slices of medieval life--from preoccupations with biblical heroines and saints to courtship, childbirth, and motherhood. While men dominated artistic production, this volume demonstrates the ways in which female artists, authors, and patrons were instrumental in the creation of illuminated manuscripts.

Find Books & Videos in the Library

Barrie Brill, a History instructor at Langara College from 1968 to 2009 has generously donated his extensive collection of several thousand books on early European history, many of them very rare. This amazing donation reflects the working life of a professional historian, and greatly enriches Kwantlen’s library collection.

To view all donated items click on the letter "B" above.

Featured Brill Collection title: 

"Fiefs and vassals : the medieval evidence reinterpreted" by Susan Reynolds

"Fiefs and Vassals is a book that will change our view of the medieval world. Offering a fundamental challenge to orthodox conceptions of feudalism, Susan Reynolds argues that the concepts of fiefs and vassalage that have been central to the understanding of medieval society for hundreds of years are in fact based on a misunderstanding of the primary sources." (source: Bowker)

(... and now for something completely different, here's the Monty Python take on the class structure of early Britain ....)

(Python Pictures. Monty Python And the Holy Grail. Burbank, CA :RCA/Columbia Pictures Home Video, 1991.)YouTube