Sexual Violence in History: A Bibliography

compiled by Stefan Blaschke


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First published: September 1, 2023 - Last updated: September 1, 2023


Author: Gila Aloni

Title: Lucrece's 'Myght'

Subtitle: Rhetorical/Sexual Potency and Potentiality in Geoffrey Chaucer's Legend of Lucrece

Journal: Rhetoric Society Quarterly

Volume: 29

Issue: 3: The Editors of Rhetorical Copulas, Archaic to Early Modern

Year: Summer 1999 (Published online: June 2, 2009)

Pages: 31-43

pISSN: 0277-3945 - Find a Library: WorldCat | eISSN: 1930-322X - Find a Library: WorldCat

Language: English

Keywords: Medieval History: 14th Century | European History: English History | Cases: Mythological Offenders / Sextus Tarquinius; Cases: Mythological Victims / Lucretia; Types: Rape; Representations: Literary Texts / Geoffrey Chaucer


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Abstract: » Gila Aloni's analysis of Chaucer's version of the Lucrece legend in terms of medieval theorizations of the rhetorical category of the copula, and specifically of the copula "might," shows that Chaucer's earlier version of the legend too deploys a rhetorical form that is sexually charged with the dialectically-related significances of phallic power and the potentiality that subtends desire through its conceptualization in medieval treatises to represent a Lucrece who is far from being a victim. Aloni shows that the manipulation of the dialectical copula "might" enables Chaucer to construct a Lucrece who is not a victim of the phallic power manifest in her rapist's physical and political prowess or "might" but a seductress who opens up the sphere of the erotic in which anything "might" happen. Engaging a similar sense of the erotic as the potential, the domain of "desire's eternal futurity,"« (Source: Sharon-Zisser, Shirley. »Inroduction.« Rhetoric Society Quarterly 29.3 (Summer 1999): p. 7)

Wikipedia: History of Europe: History of England / England in the Late Middle Ages | Literature: English literature / Geoffrey Chaucer | Literature: Rape in fiction / The Legend of Good Women | Myth: Roman mythology / Lucretia, Sextus Tarquinius | Sex and the law: Rape / History of rape, Mythological rape victims