Added: December 3, 2016 – Last updated: December 3, 2016


Speaker: Penny Roberts

Title: Ritual Violence and Sexual Violence during the French Religious Wars

Subtitle: -

Conference: 56th Annual Meeting of the Renaissance Society of America (April 8-10, 2010)

Session: Violence in Early Modern Europe I

Place: Venice, Italy

Date: April 8, 2010

Language: English

Keywords: Modern History: 16th Century | European History: French History | Types: Wartime Rape / French Wars of Religion


Link: -


Speaker: Penny Roberts, Department of History, University of Warwick

Abstract: »Intimidation, harassment, and insult were more characteristic of relations between the faiths in sixteenth-century France than the better-known acts of brutality and massacre. However, these more sensational accounts have not been subject to the usual historical rigor that we might expect of primary sources. This is all the more remarkable since the violence depicted exhibits similarities with accounts of the treatment of marginal groups within early modern society. Furthermore, gratuitous acts of brutality against women lend pathos to many narratives of violence, and these stories are often the most detailed and their actions the most ritualized. During the religious wars, women found themselves subject to verbal and physical affronts to their status and virtue. Yet, while the sexual dimension of the mutilation to which corpses were subject is well-established, the near absence of rape narratives is striking, a fact not previously noted by historians of the wars.« (Source: Renaissance Society of America website)

Publication: Roberts, Penny. »Peace, Ritual, and Sexual Violence during the Religious Wars.« Past & Present 214 (2012): 75-99. – Bibliographic Entry: Info

Wikipedia: History of Europe: History of France / Early modern France | Types of rape: Wartime sexual violence | War: French Wars of Religion