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Peak to Peak Series - "Better Widowed than Married": Conversa Women in Early Modern Europe
The mass forced conversion of Spanish and Portuguese Jews before 1492 reshaped Jewish family life in the early modern period. In this webinar, Professor Rebecca Wartell (University of Colorado Boulder) will explore this transformation, mining discussions of marriage and marital status in legal and popular Jewish literature to recover the neglected experiences and voices of Jewish and conversa women — individuals and their descendants who had been forcibly baptized into the Catholic Church. Professor Wartell will devote particular attention to how missing husbands – lost at war or sea or with fates unknown – left a disproportionate number of widows in early modern Europe. Jewish and conversa women’s lives were often defined by their status as widows or agunot (“chained women”) whose social and economic mobility was, at times, marked with more autonomy than their married counterparts.

May 24, 2021 07:00 PM in Mountain Time (US and Canada)

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