Techne: Women's Art and Artifice in Early Modern Iberia and the New World. GEMELA session at the M/MLA 11/7-11/11/2013.
As wives, mothers, servants, and slaves, women were responsible for such essential domestic tasks as food preparation and family medicine in early modern Spain and the New World. Their labor required extensive knowledge and practical skill—techne—that discomfitted uninitiated men, including authors, doctors, and agents of the law. Inquisitors, for instance, tried a disproportionately large number of women for Judaizing precisely because they prepared suspicious family meals. In literature, figures like Celestina bespeak profound anxiety over skilled women's potential to undermine the patriarchal lineage system by remaking virgins. We solicit papers on how women used both art and artifice to create their own cultural spheres of influence, alleviate oppression, or challenge men's readings of them. We are particularly interested in papers that consider the contributions of racial and religious minorities. Deadline 02/26/13.