Category Archives: Unit2

Female musicians in Renaissance art [research]

We will be looking for examples of iconography showing women in music at the Cleveland Museum of Art today. However, the CMA’s collection does not have very many examples from the Renaissance period. Using ArtStor or a similar resource, find examples of artworks from the Renaissance that show women making or listening to music.

Post your painting in the “Paintings” thread on Blackboard, and be sure to include a brief description (Artist, year, and a description of what is depicted in the artwork).


Gender in Medieval lyrics paper [critical writing]

In the packet of lyrics posted on Blackboard, you’ll find a selection of medieval lyrics. Some have been attributed to women, some to men, and some are anonymous, but I have blacked out all of this information. Looking only at the lyrics (and their English translations, of course), do you think it is possible to determine the gender of the author? Select the lyric you think is most likely to be by a woman and the one you think is most likely to be by a man, and write a description of each. Point out any words, phrases, or grammatical features that you think could possibly indicate the author’s gender. The articles listed under the reading for today describe what historians look for, and will give you some ideas.


Search Hildegard’s writings [research]

The music library and KSL both have translations of Hildegard of Bingen’s writing and lyrics, and some are also available online (but make sure to use a reliable source)–she was very prolific! Find examples from her writings and lyrics that illustrate the Eve/Mary relationship described in Rebecca Garber’s article; alternatively, find lyrics that present another female model that Hildegard wanted her nuns to emulate or learn from.

Post the lyrics in the “Hildegard” thread on Blackboard, and be sure to include a brief description of the lyrics (where you found them/what they are from, and how they are relevant).


2/6 Music in Convents II

2/6 – Music in convents II: The Renaissance and early Baroque eras in Italy

Reading: Craig Monson, Nuns Behaving Badly: Tales of Music, Magic, Art, and Arson in the Convents of Italy, pp. 8-18 (and optional, but recommended reading: all of Chapter 2, “Dangerous Enchantments: What the Inquisitor Found”)

Listening: Lucrezia Vizzana, selections from Componimenti musicali
Caterina Assandra, Duo Seraphim
Chiara Margarita Cozzolani, Kyrie


1/30 Gender in Medieval Song Lyrics

Gender in Medieval song lyrics – Trobairitz, jougleresses, and other secular musicians

Reading: Packet of medieval song lyrics
Sarah McNamer, “Lyrics and Romances,” in The Cambridge Companion to Medieval Women’s Writing, pp. 195–201.

Optional Reading: Anne Klinck, “Poetic Markers of Gender in Medieval ‘Woman’s Song’: Was Anonymous a Woman?”

Listening: Comtessa de Dia, “A Chantar”
“Bele Yolanz en ses chambres seoit”