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From Boys to Men

From Boys To Men: Formations Of Masculinity In Late Medieval Europe


While the social identity of women in medieval society hinged largely on the ritual of marriage, identity for men was derived from belonging to a particular group. Knights, monks, apprentices, guildsmen all underwent a process of initiation into their unique subcultures. As From Boys to Men shows, the process of this socialization reveals a great deal about medieval ideas of what it meant to be a man as distinguished from a boy, from a woman, and even from a beast.In an exploration of the creation of adult masculine identities in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries,From Boys to Men takes a close look at the roles of men through the lens of three distinct institutions: the university, the aristocratic household and court, and the craft workshop. Ruth Mazo Karras demonstrates that, while men in the later Middle Ages were defined as the opposite of women, this was never the only factor in determining their role in society. A knight proved himself against other men by the successful use of violence as well as by successful control of women. University scholars proved themselves against each other through a violence that was metaphorical and against other men by their Latinity and their use of the tools of logic and rationality. Craft workers proved their manhood by achieving independent householder status.Drawing on sources throughout Northern Europe, including court records and other administrative documents, prescriptive texts such as instructions for dubbing to knighthood, biographies, and imaginative literature,From Boys to Men sheds new light on how young men were trained to take their place in medieval society and the implications of that training for the construction of gender in the Middle Ages.Rescuing maleness from its classification as an ungendered category, From Boys to Men unravels what it meant to be men in a womanless context, revealing the common threads that emerge from the study of young manhood in various disparate institutional settings.



  • Condition: Used - Good
    HPB condition ratings
    • New: Item is brand new, unused and unmarked, in flawless condition.
    • Fine/Like New (F): No defects, little usage. May show remainder marks. Older books may show minor flaws.
    • Very Good (VG): Shows some signs of wear and is no longer fresh. Attractive. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
    • Good (G): Average used book with all pages present. Possible loose bindings, highlighting, cocked spine or torn dust jackets. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
    • Fair (FR): Obviously well-worn, but no text pages missing. May be without endpapers or title page. Markings do not interfere with readability. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
    • Poor (P): All text is legible but may be soiled and have binding defects. Reading copies and binding copies fall into this category. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
    Conditions Guide
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Sold by: HPB Bellevue
  • Seller rating:
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Univ of Pennsylvania Pr
  • ISBN-13: 9780812236996
  • ISBN: 0812236998
  • Publication Year: 2002


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HPB condition ratings
  • New: Item is brand new, unused and unmarked, in flawless condition.
  • Fine/Like New (F): No defects, little usage. May show remainder marks. Older books may show minor flaws.
  • Very Good (VG): Shows some signs of wear and is no longer fresh. Attractive. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Good (G): Average used book with all pages present. Possible loose bindings, highlighting, cocked spine or torn dust jackets. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Fair (FR): Obviously well-worn, but no text pages missing. May be without endpapers or title page. Markings do not interfere with readability. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
  • Poor (P): All text is legible but may be soiled and have binding defects. Reading copies and binding copies fall into this category. Used textbooks do not come with supplemental materials.
Conditions Guide
HPB condition ratings
  • New: Mint condition or still sealed (SS). Absolutely perfect in every way. New.
  • Fine/Like New (EX): No defects, little sign of use, well cared for. Plays perfectly. Close to new. Not necessarily sealed or unused, but close. Could be an unopened promotional or cut item. Sometimes called: mint-minus.
  • Very Good (VG): Will show some signs that it was played and otherwise handled by a previous owner who took good care of it.
  • Good (G): Attractive and well cared for, but no longer fresh. Minor signs of wear, scuffing or scratching, but will play almost perfectly. For vinyl: barely detectable crackles or pops.
  • Fair (FR): This item is in okay condition. For vinyl: good is not so good and the record may have low level crackles or pops when playing. CD: one or more tracks may skip.
  • Poor (P): Obviously well-worn and handled. Most vinyl collectors will not buy good or below, but some tracks on CD or vinyl will play.
Conditions Guide
HPB condition ratings
  • New: This movie is unopened and brand new.
  • Fine/Like New (EX): Near new. No defects, little sign of use. Plays perfectly. Not necessarily sealed or unused, but close. No skipping; no fuzzy or snowy frames in VHS.
  • Very Good (VG): Attractive and well cared for but no longer fresh. Minor signs of wear, but will play almost perfectly. For VHS: barely detectable distortion or very few fuzzy or snowy frames.
  • Good (G): This item is in okay condition and basically works well. There may be some minor distortion on VHS tape; slight scratching or wear on DVD.
  • Fair (FR): Basically plays, but may be obviously well-worn with some scratching or tape distortion.
  • Poor (P): Disc or tape is intact, but may be scratched or stretched. There may be skips or distortion or product defects.
Conditions Guide
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