Item description for Women at the Table: Three Medieval Theologians (Michael Glazier Books) by Marie Anne Mayeski...
Overview Although often missing in official documents, women of medieval times exercised power and voice in the theological discussions around them. Women at the Table analyzes the biographies of three saints as genuine theological sources, acknowledging the roles these women played, not only in the creation of these texts (as subject, author, source, or commissioner) but also as a legitimate part of the Church's tradition. Mayeski asserts that medieval hagiography, often neglected in theological scholarship, was a vital theological genre for early Christian theologians, and that treating them as such brings forth the lives of these women, their voices, and the transitioning Church around them.
Publishers Description Although often missing in official documents, women of medieval times exercised power and voice in the theological discussions around them. "Women at the Table analyzes the biographies of three saints as genuine theological sources, acknowledging the roles these women played, not only in the creation of these texts (as subject, author, source, or commissioner), but also as a legitimate part of the Church's tradition. Mayeski asserts that medieval hagiography, often neglected in theological scholarship, was a vital theological genre for early Christian theologians, and that treating them as such brings forth the lives of these women, their voices, and the transitioning Church around them.
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Studio: Michael Glazier Books
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.1" Width: 6.08" Height: 0.45" Weight: 0.64 lbs.
Release Date Oct 29, 2004
Publisher Michael Glazier Books
ISBN 0814658296 ISBN13 9780814658291
Availability 0 units.
More About Marie Anne Mayeski
Marie Anne Mayeski is Professor Emeritus from the Department of Theology at Loyola Marymount University.
Marie Anne Mayeski currently resides in the state of California.
Marie Anne Mayeski has published or released items in the following series...
Reviews - What do customers think about Women at the Table: Three Medieval Theologians (Michael Glazier Books)?
Influential women saints in medieval theology Nov 29, 2004
The three medieval women theologians are St. Margaret of Scotland, St. Leoba of Saxony, and St. Radegunde of Gaul. Mayeski, a professor of historical theology at Loyola Marymount U. in Los Angeles, studies biographies of the three written by contemporaries of theirs for a comprehension of the relationship between the theological thoughts and teachings of the women saints and theological issues concerning the Catholic Church during their lifetimes. As the author finds, it is significant not only that the women were chosen as subjects by leading biographers of their age. But individuals were chosen for biographies because of their value in reinforcing the position of the Church and elucidating its doctrines. The biographies of the medieval women saints were meant to be instructive on theological matters and religious virtues. But while the women patently made a significant impression on their contemporaries, their theological contributions were not recognized in following eras of Church growth and theological development. By examining original biographical and historical sources, Mayeski persuasively makes the point that the three women theologians stood out as spiritual leaders to their contemporaries; and thus there was a greater feminine influence on the Church in its early period than is ordinarily recognized or acknowledged.
Pull up a chair... Oct 22, 2004
Hagiography, the stories and tales of saints of the church, is a body of literature that has not enjoyed widespread authority in post-Enlightenment academic circles. In the Protestant world, it seemed a bit too much like Catholicism. In Catholic settings, it seemed a bit too medieval and fanciful, often tapping into the worse aspects of church's past. However, in relegating this literature to secondary (or even lesser) status, many parts of the vitality of the church (as a whole) have been lost. What modern scholarship theologically and historically has left is the `lineage of great men' legacy; for the most part, women were excluded officially from the academic, political and ecclesiastical leadership roles, but they were present in the lives, and hence the stories, of people throughout history. One of the places their legacy was preserved was hagiographic literature.
Marie Anne Mayeski draws in narrative theological style the issues, convictions and practices of Christendom from the stories of three women in particular - St. Margaret of Scotland (1045 - 1092), St. Leoba (d. 779), and St. Radegunde (d. after 557). These women had influence in their communities during their lives, and had impact on the popular imagination of people in the church. As such, their stories carried theological weight in ways often overlooked by more systematic theologies today.
With regard to Margaret of Scotland, Mayeski compares and contrasts her story with the theology of the church fathers and other leaders of the time regarding childbirth and the inheritance of sin and virtue. Margaret's life is one of connectedness to all humanity, obligation to God, and mindful of inherited goodness from God's creation as well as the fallen aspects of human nature so often concentrated upon by early theologians. Leoba's story is one of mission, and in particular, the mission of the church. It is somewhat astonishing that this mission includes Leoba fully and officially as part of the theological conversation ongoing in church life and practice. Radegunde's story is one of power and influence, some of which might have been expected through family connections, but which takes a different cast through the scriptural influence and increase in holiness - Radegunde's radical change of the concept of power in her own life is reminiscent of the radical change of power in the cross, once an object of terror and oppression by the Romans, and later a symbol of life and transformation for the Christians.
This is a fascinating book. Mayeski develops the theology from the stories, and does a good job at setting the historical context and the source provenance as well. These are figures who were previously unknown to me, who now take on a vibrant life. The bibliography gives primary and secondary sources, providing a good reading list for those (like me) who want to do further study.
The chorus of voices in the church has grown for me through this book.