Oedipus and the Devil - Witchcraft Religion and Sexuality in Early Modern Europe by Lyndal Roper (1994).pdf

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Oedipus and the Devil: Witchcraft, Sexuality and Religion in Early Modern Europe
Oedipus and the Devil
Early modern people drew the boundaries between body and soul
differently. They had a lively sense of the interaction between supernatural
power and the natural world. What did masculinity and femininity mean in
a mental universe dominated by magic? What was the cultural impact of the
Reformation and Counter-Reformation on this magical world and its
images of gender? How were the boundaries between the rational and
irrational drawn, and how did this affect the psychic life of men and
Oedipus and the Devil explores the psychological dimension of popular
culture in early modern Europe. Based on detailed historical case studies,
and using a combination of feminist theory and psychological analysis, the
book explores sexual attitudes, masculinity and femininity, magic, concepts
of excess, exorcism and witchcraft. Marking a shift away from the view
that gender is a product of cultural and linguistic practice, the author
argues that sexual difference has its own psychological and physiological
reality, which is part of the very stuff of culture and must influence the way
we write history.
This bold and imaginative book transforms our view of the relations
between men and women, and marks out a new route towards
understanding the body and its relationship to culture and subjectivity.
Lyndal Roper is Reader in History at Royal Holloway, University of
London. Her last book was The Holy Household: Women and morals in
Reformation Augsburg (1989). She was co-editor, with Jim Obelkevich and
Raphael Samuel, of Disciplines of Faith, Studies in Religion, Politics and
Patriarchy (1987).
Oedipus and the Devil
Witchcraft, sexuality and religion
in early modern Europe
Lyndal Roper
London and New York
First published 1994
by Routledge
11 New Fetter Lane, London EC4P 4EE
This edition published in the Taylor & Francis e-Library, 2005.
“To purchase your own copy of this or any of Taylor & Francis or Routledge’s
collection of thousands of eBooks please go to www.eBookstore.tandf.co.uk.”
Simultaneously published in the USA and Canada
by Routledge
29 West 35th Street, New York, NY 10001
Reprinted 1995, 1997
© 1994 Lyndal Roper
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or
reproduced or utilized in any form or by any electronic,
mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter
invented, including photocopying and recording, or in any
information storage or retrieval system, without permission in
writing from the publishers.
British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data
A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library
Library of Congress Cataloguing in Publication Data
A catalogue record for this book is available from the Library of Congress
ISBN 0-203-42629-0 Master e-book ISBN
ISBN 0-203-73453-X (Adobe eReader Format)
ISBN 0-415-08894-1 (hbk) ISBN 0-415-10581-1 (pbk)
List of plates
1 Introduction
2 Was there a crisis in gender relations in sixteenth-
century Germany?
3 Will and honour: sex, words and power in Augsburg
criminal trials
4 Sexual utopianism in the German Reformation
Part II
5 Blood and codpieces: masculinity in the early modern
German town
6 Stealing manhood: capitalism and magic in early
modern Germany
7 Drinking, whoring and gorging: brutish indiscipline and
the formation of Protestant identity
8 Exorcism and the theology of the body
9 Witchcraft and fantasy in early modern Germany
10 Oedipus and the Devil
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