Start Date

18-4-2018 10:30 AM

End Date

18-4-2018 11:45 AM

Disciplines

History of Gender | History of Religion

Subjects

Menstruation in the Bible, Women in Christianity -- Europe -- History -- Middle Ages (600-1500), Spirituality -- Christianity -- History -- Middle Ages (600-1500)

Abstract

The Curse of Eve—or the menstrual process—was a topic widely stigmatized and perpetuated in the thirteenth century. With the publication and translation of classic Greek and Roman texts, the misconceptions and stereotypes were influenced by not only the publications of historical texts, but also the authoritarian rule of the Roman Catholic Church. The social position of European women in the thirteenth century dictated that women were physically and emotionally handicapped by the menstrual cycle. The discrimination against women in the medieval church was largely dictated by the perception of female menstrual blood compared to the “purity” and cleanliness of the male body and functionality. The taboos associated with menstruation were systemized and immortalized in Christian Europe, specifically during the thirteenth century due to the rise of scholasticism and influence of writers like Albertus Magnus and the Fourth Latern Coucnil. Due to lack of knowledge, and systemic sexism a stigma of impure blood was created.

Notes

Honorable Mention, Karen E. Hoppes Young Historians Award for Outstanding Research and Writing.

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© Copyright the author(s)

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Persistent Identifier

http://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/24773

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Apr 18th, 10:30 AM Apr 18th, 11:45 AM

Impure Blood: The Menstrual Taboo in the Christian Church During the Thirteenth Century

The Curse of Eve—or the menstrual process—was a topic widely stigmatized and perpetuated in the thirteenth century. With the publication and translation of classic Greek and Roman texts, the misconceptions and stereotypes were influenced by not only the publications of historical texts, but also the authoritarian rule of the Roman Catholic Church. The social position of European women in the thirteenth century dictated that women were physically and emotionally handicapped by the menstrual cycle. The discrimination against women in the medieval church was largely dictated by the perception of female menstrual blood compared to the “purity” and cleanliness of the male body and functionality. The taboos associated with menstruation were systemized and immortalized in Christian Europe, specifically during the thirteenth century due to the rise of scholasticism and influence of writers like Albertus Magnus and the Fourth Latern Coucnil. Due to lack of knowledge, and systemic sexism a stigma of impure blood was created.