Marriage and Sexuality in Medieval and Early Modern Iberia

Ed. Eukene Lacarra Lanz
This collection of essays examines the politics of gender and desire in premodern Iberia. The editor brings together a group of noted specialists in Arabic, as well as Castilian, Catalan, and other Romance languages, to investigate the changes that affected marriage and sexuality over the course of a millennium, from approximately 650 to 1650 A.D. The contributors utilize a variety of literary and philosophical texts, legal documents, and medical treatises to explore a broad range of topics, such as shrew taming, wedding rituals, wet-nursing, cross-dressing, sodomy, and moral pornography. The volume's interdisciplinary approach traces the origins and genealogies of the predominant discourses on these subjects that engaged the minds of medieval and premodern writers, moralist, politicians, and scientists alike.

Table of Contents


Eukene Lacarra Lanz

Part I. From Maidenhood to the Marriage State Domesticating Women

Chapter 1

Marriage and Sexuality in Al-Andalus
Manuela Marín

Chapter 2

Intimate Violence: Shrew Taming as Wedding Ritual in the Conde Lucanor
Louise O. Vasvári

Chapter 3

The Consells-Consejos on Marriage and Their Broader Sentimental Context
Antonio Cortijo Ocaña

Part II. Playing the Game of Wife and Mother

Chapter 4

Pawn or Player?: Violant of Bar and the Game of Matrimonial Politics in the Crown of Aragon (1380–1396)
Dawn Bratsch-Prince

Chapter 5

Milking the Poor: Wet-nursing and the Sexual Economy of Early Modern Spain
Emilie L. Bergmann

Part III. Love and Sexuality Allegory of Society’s Corruption

Chapter 6

Natural Love in Early Renaissance Spanish Theater: Serafina, an Anonymous Comedia of 1521
David R. Castillo

Chapter 7

“Un engaño a los ojos”: Sex and Allegory in La Lozana andaluza
Manuel da Costa Fontes

Chapter 8

Changing Boundaries of Licit and Illicit Unions: Concubinage and Prostitution
Eukene Lacarra Lanz

Part IV. Female Approaches to Power Revelation and “Moral Pornography”

Chapter 9

Writing and Sodomy in the Inquisitorial Trial (1495-1496) of Tecla Servent
Ronald Surtz

Chapter 10

“Moral Pornography”: Angela Carter and María de Zayas
Marina S. Brownlee


Sexuality, Marriage, and Power in Medieval and Early Modern Iberia
Gwendolyn Barnes-Karol and Nicholas Spadaccini