Same Sex Unions in Premodern Europe

Author: John Boswell
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9780804150958
Release Date: 2013-08-28
Genre: Social Science

Both highly praised and intensely controversial, this brilliant book produces dramatic evidence that at one time the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches not only sanctioned unions between partners of the same sex, but sanctified them--in ceremonies strikingly similar to heterosexual marriage ceremonies.

Same sex Unions in Premodern Europe

Author: John Boswell
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9780679751649
Release Date: 1995
Genre: History

Both highly praised and intensely controversial, this brilliant book produces dramatic evidence that at one time the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches not only sanctioned unions between partners of the same sex, but sanctified them--in ceremonies strikingly similar to heterosexual marriage ceremonies.

Same Sex Marriage in Renaissance Rome

Author: Gary Ferguson
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 9781501706554
Release Date: 2016-07-09
Genre: Social Science

Same-sex marriage is a hotly debated topic in the United States, and the world, today. From the tenor of most discussions, however, it would be easy to conclude that the idea of marriage between two people of the same sex is a uniquely contemporary phenomenon. Not so, argues Gary Ferguson in this remarkable book about a same-sex wedding ceremony in sixteenth-century Rome. The case in question involved a group of mostly Spanish and Portuguese men, arrested and executed in Rome in 1578, said to have performed same-sex wedding ceremonies in one of the city's major churches. We know about the incident from a number of sources, including the travel journal of the French essayist Michel de Montaigne. Several substantial fragments of the transcript of the men’s trial have also survived, along with copies of their wills. Making use of all these documents, Ferguson brings the story to life in striking detail. He reveals not only the names of the men but also where they lived, how they were employed, and who their friends were. In particular, he unearths a surprising amount of detail about the men’s sex lives, and how others responded to this information, which allows him to explore attitudes toward marriage, sex, and gender at the time. Emphasizing the instability of marriage in premodern Europe, Ferguson argues that same-sex unions should be considered part of the institution’s complex and contested history.

Homosexuality and Civilization

Author: Louis Crompton
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674030060
Release Date: 2003
Genre: History

How have major civilizations of the last two millennia treated people who were attracted to their own sex? In a narrative tour de force, Louis Crompton chronicles the lives and achievements of homosexual men and women alongside a darker history of persecution, as he compares the Christian West with the cultures of ancient Greece and Rome, Arab Spain, imperial China, and pre-Meiji Japan. Ancient Greek culture celebrated same-sex love in history, literature, and art, making high claims for its moral influence. By contrast, Jewish religious leaders in the sixth century B.C.E. branded male homosexuality as a capital offense and, later, blamed it for the destruction of the biblical city of Sodom. When these two traditions collided in Christian Rome during the late empire, the tragic repercussions were felt throughout Europe and the New World. Louis Crompton traces Church-inspired mutilation, torture, and burning of "sodomites" in sixth-century Byzantium, medieval France, Renaissance Italy, and in Spain under the Inquisition. But Protestant authorities were equally committed to the execution of homosexuals in the Netherlands, Calvin's Geneva, and Georgian England. The root cause was religious superstition, abetted by political ambition and sheer greed. Yet from this cauldron of fears and desires, homoerotic themes surfaced in the art of the Renaissance masters--Donatello, Leonardo, Michelangelo, Sodoma, Cellini, and Caravaggio--often intertwined with Christian motifs. Homosexuality also flourished in the court intrigues of Henry III of France, Queen Christina of Sweden, James I and William III of England, Queen Anne, and Frederick the Great. Anti-homosexual atrocities committed in the West contrast starkly with the more tolerant traditions of pre-modern China and Japan, as revealed in poetry, fiction, and art and in the lives of emperors, shoguns, Buddhist priests, scholars, and actors. In the samurai tradition of Japan, Crompton makes clear, the celebration of same-sex love rivaled that of ancient Greece. Sweeping in scope, elegantly crafted, and lavishly illustrated, "Homosexuality and Civilization" is a stunning exploration of a rich and terrible past.

Christianity Social Tolerance and Homosexuality

Author: John Boswell
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226345369
Release Date: 2015-12-10
Genre: Social Science

John Boswell’s National Book Award–winning study of the history of attitudes toward homosexuality in the early Christian West was a groundbreaking work that challenged preconceptions about the Church’s past relationship to its gay members—among them priests, bishops, and even saints—when it was first published thirty-five years ago. The historical breadth of Boswell’s research (from the Greeks to Aquinas) and the variety of sources consulted make this one of the most extensive treatments of any single aspect of Western social history. Now in this thirty-fifth anniversary edition with a new foreword by leading queer and religious studies scholar Mark D. Jordan, Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality is still fiercely relevant. This landmark book helped form the disciplines of gay and gender studies, and it continues to illuminate the origins and operations of intolerance as a social force.

Brother making in Late Antiquity and Byzantium

Author: Claudia Rapp
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780195389333
Release Date: 2016-02-10
Genre: Byzantine Empire

"Among medieval Christian societies, Byzantium is unique in preserving the text of a church ritual for 'brother-making' (adelphopoiesis), in which two adult men are pronounced by the prayers of a priest to be 'brothers.' They are expected to remain on friendly terms, and have access to one another's households as quasi-family members. Both the ritual and its application are well attested from the late eighth century to the 15th century and beyond. This phenomenon was at the center of John Boswell's highly controversial and publicized book Same-Sex Unions in Pre-Modern Europe (1994). Although most critics dismissed Boswell's claims that these 'unions' represented church-sanctioned homosexual marriages, his book introduced readers to a poorly-understood Byzantine institution. Claudia Rapp's project will be the first ever book-length study of the ritual brotherhood in medieval Byzantium. Her main objective is to contextualize the tradition in other kinship relationships of Byzantine society and to trace its origins back to early Byzantine monasticism. Rapp will draw on new material on the structure of the ritual and its appearance in the manuscripts to show its proximity to rituals of Christian initiation, such as baptism and entry into the monastic life. She will also consider parallels to male-male relationships in pagan antiquity. Her book will make a timely contribution to an ongoing debate which has lost some of the heat since the aftermath of Boswell's book, but which remains of intrinsic interest to medieval studies, church history and the evolution of social institutions"--Provided by publisher.

Outlaw Marriages

Author: Rodger Streitmatter
Publisher: Beacon Press
ISBN: 9780807003350
Release Date: 2012-05-15
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

For more than a century before gay marriage became a hot-button political issue, same-sex unions flourished in America. Pairs of men and pairs of women joined together in committed unions, standing by each other “for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health” for periods of thirty or forty—sometimes as many as fifty—years. In short, they loved and supported each other every bit as much as any husband and wife. In Outlaw Marriages, cultural historian Rodger Streitmatter reveals how some of these unions didn’t merely improve the quality of life for the two people involved but also enriched the American culture. Among the high-profile couples whose lives and loves are illuminated in the following pages are Nobel Peace Prize winner Jane Addams and Mary Rozet Smith, literary icon Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas, author James Baldwin and Lucien Happersberger, and artists Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg.

The Origins and Role of Same Sex Relations in Human Societies

Author: James Neill
Publisher: McFarland
ISBN: 9780786452477
Release Date: 2008-10-27
Genre: Social Science

"In this work, the author challenges what some call the "heterosexual myth," arguing that human sexuality is not as absolute as prevalent thought suggests. Drawing on historic and current data, the book instead argues that, historically, human sexuality has been ambiguous, and that very few humans are, by nature, exclusively homosexual or heterosexual"--Provided by publisher.

When Brothers Dwell in Unity

Author: Stephen Morris
Publisher: McFarland
ISBN: 9781476622149
Release Date: 2016-01-27
Genre: Social Science

In the world of early Byzantine Christianity, monastic rules acknowledged but discouraged the homosexual impulses of adult males. What most disturbed monastic leaders was adolescent males being accepted as novices; adult men were considered unable to control their sexual desires for these “beautiful boys.” John Chrysostom, the Archbishop of Constantinople (397–407), virulently denounced homosexuality, but was virtually the only Byzantine cleric to do so. Penances traditionally attached to heterosexual sins—including remarriage after divorce or widowhood—have always been much more severe than those for a variety of homosexual acts or relationships. Just as Byzantine churches have found ways to accommodate sequential marriages and other behavior once stridently condemned, this book argues, it is possible for Byzantine Christianity to make pastoral accommodations for gay relationships and same-sex marriage.

A Natural History of Homosexuality

Author: Francis Mark Mondimore
Publisher: JHU Press
ISBN: 9780801853494
Release Date: 1996-01-01
Genre: Social Science

Provides a survey of current research on homosexuality, covering all disciplines from history and anthropology to genetics and psychotherapy

Love Between Women

Author: Bernadette J. Brooten
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226075931
Release Date: 2009-02-15
Genre: Social Science

Love Between Women examines female homoeroticism and the role of women in the ancient Roman world. Employing an unparalleled range of cultural sources, Brooten finds evidence of marriages between women and establishes that condemnations of female homoerotic practices were based on widespread awareness of love between women. "An extraordinary accomplishment. . . . A definitive source for all future discussion of homoeroticism and the Bible."—Mary Rose D'Angelo, Harvard Gay & Lesbian Review "[Brooten's] convincing analysis . . . not only profoundly reshapes our understanding of the past, but it should also shape the way in which that past, particularly the early Christian texts with their immense normative weight, will be used for the future."—Anne L. Clark, Journal of Lesbian Studies "Love Between Women gives contemporary debates on sexuality a carefully delineated past. It boldly insists upon a different future, one informed by history but not tyrannized by it."—Susan Ackerman, Lambda Book Report "Fascinating, provocative and lucid. . . . Brooten has made a fundamental contribution to women's and gender studies, gay and lesbian studies, and classics."—Elizabeth A. Castelli, Women's Review of Books Winner of the Lambda Literary Award for Best Lesbian Studies Book, 1997

STRANGER AT THE GATE

Author: Mel White
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781501123993
Release Date: 2015-12-08
Genre: Biography & Autobiography

A Simon & Schuster eBook. Simon & Schuster has a great book for every reader.

Marriage a History

Author: Stephanie Coontz
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 9781101118252
Release Date: 2006-02-28
Genre: History

Just when the clamor over "traditional" marriage couldn’t get any louder, along comes this groundbreaking book to ask, "What tradition?" In Marriage, a History, historian and marriage expert Stephanie Coontz takes readers from the marital intrigues of ancient Babylon to the torments of Victorian lovers to demonstrate how recent the idea of marrying for love is—and how absurd it would have seemed to most of our ancestors. It was when marriage moved into the emotional sphere in the nineteenth century, she argues, that it suffered as an institution just as it began to thrive as a personal relationship. This enlightening and hugely entertaining book brings intelligence, perspective, and wit to today’s marital debate.