8 March 2005 — Dr. Teresa Reed, Jacksonville State University
associate professor of English, will discuss her book, Shadows of Mary: Understanding Images of Mary through
Medieval Text (University of Wales Press, 2003), during a meeting of Friends of the Houston Cole Library at 7 p.m.
Tuesday, March 15 on the 11th floor of the library. The event is open to the public.
The book is available at www.bn.com
From the publisher: In medieval thought, Mary was a virgin, a mother, a daughter, and a wife, alone of all her sex and yet also continually
invoked in order to define femininity in general. Shadows of Mary analyses the figure of the Virgin Mary in
medieval theological, philosophical and literary texts in order to understand how stories about her influenced the
creation of female characters in both sacred and secular writing.
Teresa Reed traces aspects of Marian figuration ranging from Chaucer's Constance and the Wife of Bath, to the medical
woman of the English Trotula, Saint Margaret of Antioch and the Pearl maiden. She shows how the rhetorical processes
through which the medieval church manifested its ideas of truth are caught up in representational anxieties surrounding
the body of a woman, and in Mary's relationship with her shadow, Eve.
Shadows of Mary's detailed analysis of the multiple and often contradictory roles occupied by Mary in medieval
thought also opens up ways of thinking through the connections between literary representation and social practices.
It offers innovative ways for using medieval studies to think through issues that have come to preoccupy contemporary
studies of gender and culture.
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