Salisbury tells the stories of 150 women from the ancient world, ranging from the very famous, such as Cleopatra VII, immortalized by Hollywood, to the barely remembered, such as the Roman poet Nossis. Writing for a general audience, Salisbury begins by painting each woman into her historical context, then recounts each woman's story, describing the choices she made as she looked for happiness, wealth, power, or well-being for herself and her family--stories much like our own. In entries on general themes--clothing, cosmetics, work, sexuality, prostitution, gynecology--Salisbury analyzes the commonalties in the lives of these women of antiquity from a cross-cultural perspective.
"...a brave and fascinating exploration of an area that has so far been rather neglected by both historical and literary critics. The Beast Within provides extremely valuable information on the legal and cultural background of the human-animal relationship..." -- Studies in the Age of Chaucer
This important book offers a unique exploration of the use of and attitude towards animals from the 4th to the 14th centuries.
The Beast Within explores the varying roles of animals as property, food and sexual objects, and the complex relationship that this created with the people and world around them. Joyce E. Salisbury takes an interdisciplinary approach to the subject, weaving a historical narrative that includes economic, legal, theological, literary and artistic sources. The book shows how by the end of the Middle Ages the lines between humans and animals had blurred completely, making us recognise the beast that lay within us all.
This new edition has been brought right up to date with current scholarship, and includes a brand new chapter on animals on trial and animals as human companions, as well as expanded and updated discussions on fables and saints, and a new section on ‘bestial humans’. This important and provocative book remains a key work on the historical study of animals, as well as in the field of environmental history more generally, and also provides crucial context to ongoing debates on animal rights and the environment.
Salisbury restores this influential, too-often forgotten woman to the center stage of this crucial period. Describing Galla Placidia’s life from childhood to death while detailing the political and military developments that influenced her—and that she influenced in turn—the book relies on religious and political sources to weave together a narrative that combines social, cultural, political, and theological history.
The Roman world changed dramatically during Placidia’s rule: the Empire became Christian, barbarian tribes settled throughout the West, and Rome began its unmistakable decline. But during her long reign, Placidia wielded formidable power. She fended off violent invaders and usurpers who challenged her Theodosian dynasty; presided over the dawn of the Catholic Church as theological controversies split the faithful and church practices and holidays were established; and spent fortunes building churches and mosaics that incorporated prominent images of herself and her family. Compulsively readable, Rome’s Christian Empress is the first full-length work to give this fascinating and complex ruler her due.
Salisbury shows through the engaging stories of the martyrs introduced in each chapter, how their legacy continues to shape contemporary ideas. Discussing modern martyrdom the book elicits deep lessons for the present from the ancient past and outlining the possibility of a religious future without violence.
In The Blood of Martyrs, Salisbury brings to life this tumultuous time in late antiquity and sheds invaluable light on religious violence, modern martyrs, and self-sacrifice.