The Christ Child in Medieval Culture: Alpha Es Et O!, edited by Mary Dzon and Theresa M. Kenney (University of Dallas) was published by the University of Toronto Press in 2012. The cult of the Christ Child flourished in late medieval Europe across lay and religious, as well as geographic and cultural boundaries. Depictions of Christ’s boyhood are found throughout popular culture, visual art, and literature. The Christ Child in Medieval Culture is the first interdisciplinary investigation of how representations of the Christ Child were conceptualized and employed in this period.
The contributors to this unique volume analyse depictions of the Christ Child through a variety of frameworks, including the interplay of mortality and divinity, the medieval conceit of a suffering Christ Child, and the interrelationships between Christ and other figures, including saints and ordinary children. The Christ Child in Medieval Culture synthesizes various approaches to interpreting the cultural meaning of medieval religious imagery and illuminates the significance of its most central figure.
‘An excellent collection! … With its impressive, forward-thinking scholarship, these essays will find a broad readership of scholars and students from a variety of disciplines.’ Josie Campbell, Department of English, University of Rhode Island
‘The abiding impression of this collection – and every essay repays reading and re-reading – is of the extraordinary richness and poetry of medieval devotions and its remarkable freedom from sentimental fripperies.’ Henrietta Leyser, Journal of Ecclesiastical History
‘A lively collection of essays.’ Elisabeth Dutton, Speculum
‘A fascinating volume that makes highly entertaining reading, and should be of widespread scholarly interest.’ Judith Oliver, The Medieval Review