Joan of Arc and Richard III : Sex, Saints, and Government in the Middle Ages
This book is intended for scholars and students of medieval European (especially English and French) history.
- Paperback | 280 pages
- 141.7 x 210.1 x 19.8mm | 427.98g
- 18 Jul 1991
- Oxford University Press Inc
- New York, United States
Back cover copy
Medieval historian Charles Wood considers the larger than life figures Joan of Arc and Richard III, whose actions, both real and legendary, helped to shape the political character of their respective countries. Wood explores how France and England, governmentally so similar in the eleventh century, became so dissimilar by the fifteenth, with France's monarchy moving rapidly toward absolutism while England's was becoming more limited and representational. Wood argues that Joan of Arc and Richard III gave final medieval form to these developments, Joan by restoring the sanctity of the French crown through her divine mission, Richard by rendering legitimate the restraining role of Parliament. Focusing on topics often neglected by other historians, Wood includes lively discussions of royal adultery scandals, child-kings and the problems they posed, and earlier peoples and crisis that helped to shape the culture of sex and sainthood that was so profoundly that of the Middle Ages.
Charles T. Wood ... is that rare thing among contemporary American medievalists, an academic gadfly, in the best sense of that term. Instead of taking the 'safe" route, Wood has... alternatively goaded and irked scholars into reconsidering received notions on a variety of (usually) controversial subjects. Joan of Arc and Richard III ... represent(s) Wood's original and provocative interpretation of English and French medieval history. * George Stow, Albion * There are many reasons why Professor Wood's study of French and English history in the late Middle Ages is a notably satisfying book ... Wood has style, both in curiosity and diction, and fortunately he enjoys displaying it... These mature reflections are calculated to excite students and to provoke their teachers out of routine responses. C.M.D. Crowder, Speculum