Dr. Michelle Armstrong-Partida, Associate Professor of History, published Women and Community in Medieval and Early Modern Iberia (University of Nebraska Press, 2020) with co-editors Alexandra Guerson (University of Toronto) and Dana Wessell Lightfoot (University of Northern British Columbia). Congratulations to Armstrong-Partida and her co-editors on winning the 2020 Collaborative Project Award from the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women and Gender. Read more about the volume and prize in the award citation below:
The awards committee praised the book for interrogating the very idea of what constitutes community, and demonstrating that examining women’s roles and activities beyond the family changes our understanding of gender and social networks. Rather than treating community as self-evident or static, the contributors “explore the multi-varied and interwoven networks that women of different religious, socioeconomic, and geographic regions were embedded within.” While the deeply researched and well-written individual chapters address communities of Jewish women, conversas, Moriscas, nuns, and widows, the volume ranges beyond these groups to include women whose communities were not defined by religion or in relation to men: victims of clerical violence; perpetrators of neighborhood feuds; recipients of charitable support; and writers of wills. The volume amply fulfills its goal of “more clearly see[ing] women’s ability to navigate a multiplicity of identities and roles—and moves beyond the traditional approach of studying women within the confines of their families.” By treating community as a category of analysis, it reframes our understanding of the roles of women in medieval and early modern society.