The following excerpt is written by Christiane Klapisch-Zuber.
"Men of the middle ages long conceived of 'the woman' as a category, but only late in the period did they distinguish variations in the behavior expected of women by applying criteria such as professional activities to their model. Before she was seen as a peasant, the lady of a castle, or a saint, 'the woman' was defined by her body, her gender, and her relations with family groups. Wife, widow, or maid, her juridical persona and the ethic by which she lived in her daily life were portrayed in relation to a man or group of man" (page 285).
Taken from: Goff, J.L. (Ed.) (1987). Medieval Callings. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Page 285.
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