Journal Article

Bridging the Difference: Reconceptualising the Angel in Medieval Hagiography

Gail Ashton

in Literature and Theology

Volume 16, issue 3, pages 235-247
Published in print August 2002 | ISSN: 0269-1205
Published online August 2002 | e-ISSN: 1477-4623 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/litthe/16.3.235
Bridging the Difference: Reconceptualising the Angel in Medieval Hagiography

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This article explores tensions inherent in representations of the angel in some late medieval texts using Irigaray's concept of an ‘ethics of alterity’. I contend that the angel has a dual valency, witnessed at the site of the body. It is simultaneously a masculine construct, a tangible index of holy worth associated with the ocular and a feminised, ambiguous symbol allied to scent, sound and touch, thus highlighting and eliding sexual difference. The angel, then, is not simply a messenger but a bridge between humans and God, between men and women, one that affirms the mutuality of a loving relationship.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Religion and Art, Literature, and Music

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