Appel à contribution : « Rethinking Mary in Early Modern Europe. Women’s Voices and the Virgin Mary », Rome, Norwegian Institute, 22-23 juin 2023, date limite le 15 février 2023

The Virgin Mary is a crucial figure for Western culture and Christian worship, and has always been strictly connected to women and their status in society. A large amount of literature in Latin and the vernacular was written about Mary in early modern Italy and Europe, by both lay and religious men and women, representing her in different ways and with different purposes, transforming and adapting her traditional image.

This symposium, with an interdisciplinary approach, aims to explore the ways in which the Virgin Mary was represented in texts written by, for or about women between the 15th and the 17th centuries, in order to understand to what extent the Virgin was presented as an empowering figure for women, or on the contrary, as a model of subjection and domesticity; how her characteristics changed in different moments and places in the early modern period; how the Reformation and the Counter Reformation influenced the ways in which the Virgin was described and connected to women; and how these transformations shaped the definitions and representations of women and the semantic of virtues. An evaluation of these aspects can shed new light on the development of women’s history, on the theorization of political and religious thought and on the construction of women’s identities in the Western world. Papers on, but not limited to, the following topics will be considered:

  •  Women’s Writings about the Virgin Mary.
  • Texts where the Virgin Mary is proposed as a model for women.
  • Texts where the Virgin is used by women as authoritative figure.
  • Texts where the Virgin is used by women for political reasons.
  • Texts by women where the Virgin is a source of inspiration and an object of devotion.
  • Connections between literary works and artistic representations of the Virgin.
  • Connections between Marian literature and the discourse on women.
  • Connections between the Virgin and female prophecy, sanctity and mysticism.

Please send a 250/300-words abstract of your proposed paper, your name, your affiliation and a short bio to Dr Eleonora Carinci by 15 February 2023. Papers can be either in Italian or English. The symposium will be in person, with the possibility to be followed remotely.

The symposium is part of the project “Rethinking Mary in Early Modern Italy: Men’s and Women’s perspectives on the Virgin Mary (1450-1650)”, funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska Curie grant agreement n. 101031720. For more info on the project see:


Citer ce billet
Florence Larcher (2023, 27 janvier). Appel à contribution : « Rethinking Mary in Early Modern Europe. Women’s Voices and the Virgin Mary », Rome, Norwegian Institute, 22-23 juin 2023, date limite le 15 février 2023. Centre d'Histoire de l'Art de la Renaissance. Consulté le 4 mars 2024, à l’adresse

Florence Larcher

Florence Larcher est doctorante à l'Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne. Ses recherches sur les images de saint Roch en Italie de 1350 à 1680 l'amènent à étudier la peinture murale, la sérialité et l'itinérance des peintres.

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