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Women, Art, and Spirituality
The Poor Clares of Early Modern Italy


  • Date Published: June 2011
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521294898

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About the Authors
  • Originally published in 1996, Women, Art, and Spirituality: The Poor Clares of Early Modern Italy situates the art made between the thirteenth and sixteenth centuries for the Franciscan nuns in its historical and religious contexts. Evaluating its production from sociological and intellectual perspectives, this study also addresses the discourse between spirituality, devotional practices, and aesthetic attitudes as formalised in the construction and decoration of the women's convents and in their didactic literature. Based on a range of sources, it integrates important primary texts, such as Saint Clare's rule, poetry composed by the nuns, financial records, and family history in the analysis of paintings, sculpture, and architecture commissioned by the order. The text also synthesises theories from anthropology, women's studies, history, and literature with traditional iconographical and social approaches from art history.

    • Was the first book-length study of a female monastic order and art in early modern Italy
    • A comprehensive exploration of gender issues
    • Interdisciplinary approach that draws from history, religious studies, women's studies, literature, art history
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    Reviews & endorsements

    Review of the hardback: 'An excellent introduction to the religious vision of the Poor Clares, with a thorough and up to date bibliography.' Glasgow Women's Library

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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2011
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521294898
    • length: 290 pages
    • dimensions: 254 x 178 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.51kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Clara, Claris, Praeclara
    2. Within the walls
    3. Piccarda's convent
    4. A network of nuns
    5. Vision and ecstasy

  • Author

    Jeryldene M. Wood, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

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