My loves, I know I promised you part two of medieval kink this week, but world events have overtaken me. Instead, I have put together a list of articles about abortion in the medieval period, and I believe that reading them is likely a better use of your time. Later today over at my podcast, We’re Not So Different, we will also have an episode out about the topic.
Continue reading “A medieval abortion reading list”
I have tried to select articles that you can read, but near the bottom you will also find some books on the subject if you want to know more later.
Because my job is what it is, and my partner’s is what his is, we have the delightful opportunity of occasionally getting to be the subject of hit pieces from the absolute muck-raking depths of the UK media industry. The other week, we went through that again while a bunch of people pearl clutched over the amazing and important relationships and sex education over at BISH (where I have also written before!) was targeted because it dared to acknowledge the fact that kink exists to young people. (Please support BISH and the work going on over there, just by the by. It will piss off the Daily Mail.)
Continue reading “On medieval kink (part one)”
This week in Texas, America’s Most Normal State(™) one brave lawmaker has sprung into action to protect children. Don’t worry though, he didn’t decide that he was gonna, you know, do anything about the epidemic of violent white supremacy and the violence that easy access to guns for radicalised people can unleash on classrooms full of innocent school children. Oh no. The brave Bryan Slaton has elected, instead, to introduce a ban on allowing children to attend drag shows. Here is the brave brave little guy’s announcement:
Continue reading “On conflating drag, (and femininity), with sexuality”
I used to teach an introductory course on medieval history at a university here in London where we had a week dedicated to introducing the concept of courtly love. If the students so chose, they could later write an essay on the topic. The question that they were asked to answer was: “What does courtly love literature tell us about women in medieval society?” It was a trick question. I have been thinking about the reasons why that was a trick question lately, because over the past few weeks I have been learning a lot about Jacques Lacan.
Continue reading “On men, romance, and trick questions”
Last week I went to the National Gallery to do some research for my next book and spent a bunch of time taking photos of altarpieces that feature one of my favourite saints – Saint Sebastian, the patron saint of athletes, soldiers, and people who want to die a saintly death. He was a big fav of medieval people as well, which is why we end up having great images like this to geek out over:
Continue reading “My fav saints: St Sebastian”
The other day, friend of and contributor to the blog, and my writing partner the infinitely talented Dr Sara Öberg Strådal made a very good and funny point about a bunch of Evangelicals who are trying to … NFT prayers. Witness it, and laugh:
Continue reading “On indulgences”
As I continue to pull myself out of the hole caused by finishing a book and recovering from COVID, I was reminded of something that I wanted to write about in January but just didn’t have the time or health to do it. I was made aware of it due to a particularly bonkers piece of Twitter lore which I am absolutely not going to unpack here, but it stayed on my mind because it displays an honest to god medieval attitude towards women and sex. So, without further ado I give you this exchange:
Continue reading “On women, pleasure, and semen”
I am aware, my gorgeous readers, that the blog has been languishing of late. This is down to the fact that I foolishly agreed to write a book which is, and I am not sure if you are aware of this, hard. Luckily I should have more time to spout off here now that it is all turned in, however. As a little celebration of finishing up, the other week I took a little mini-holiday to Norwich, and today I want to talk to you about some cool medieval stuff I saw there and what it means.
Continue reading “On non-written communication (in Norwich)”
Every day I wake up with the grinding worry that some non-historian has had a very mad medieval history take, and every day that is true. Sadly, yesterday was one of those days once again as some basic wrote a bad take in The New York Times about how the Black Death allegedly improved conditions for workers. This, of course, is something I have rebutted at length, both on here, and also in The Washington Post (because ya girl is fancy now). It is one thing to complain about how this is bad history that has been roundly debunked, as I do that all the time. However, today I want to talk a little where in medieval history we can look for good news.
Continue reading “On finding inspiration for change”