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(PUBOxford)''A remarkable feat of writing: a short, packed, but highly accessible guide which is a first class introduction,''---Times Higher Education Supplement. Marriage, health care, housing, costume, social, and legal constraints from the third to sixth centuries. 159 pages, softcover.
This book bridges a gap between two traditional disciplines. Since the 1970s, there has been a remarkable outpouring of work on women in antiquity, but women in late antiquity (3rd-6th centuries A.D.) have been far less studied. Classicists have been more concerned with the first two centuries A.D., and theologians have been interested in New Testament, rather than patristic, teaching about women or its social and cultural setting. In this book, Clark offers an introduction to the basic conditions of life for women: marriage, divorce, celibacy and prostitution; legal constraints and protection; child-bearing, health care, and medical theories; housing, housework, and clothes; and the general assumptions about female nature which were discarded at need. Christian and non-Christian literature, art, and archaeology are used to exemplify both the practicalities of life and the prevailing "discourses" of the ancient world.
Gillian Clark is Lecturer in the School of Archaeology, Classics and Oriental Studies at the University of Liverpool.
"Clearly and engagingly written and will be of use in undergraduate courses on women in antiquity."--Religious Studies Review
"An excellent and lucid study of women and their rights (or lack thereof) at the crucial period, the transition from paganism to Christianity, and the resulting laws. A strong study!"--J.M. Balcer, Ohio State University
"This little gem of a book...is a delight to read....Clark has done a tremendous service in stitching together a fascinating patchwork of facts and ideas."--Bryn Mawr Classical Review
"A masterpiece of compression....She has given us not only a first-class introduction, but also an important historical contribution."--Times Higher Education Supplement
"Her book provides a solid grounding in late-antique women's history for the lay reader or student....Clark's book stands as good, accessible women's history....Her book is a fine contribution to the ongoing process of illuminating the lives of women and their relationship to the discourses that represent them to us."--American Historical Review