Queer Lactations in Early Modern Visual Culture
Gisela Sperling, Jutta
CollectionSwiss National Science Foundation (SNF)
»Roman Charity« investigates the iconography of the breastfeeding daughter from the perspective of queer sexuality and erotic maternity. The volume explores the popularity of a topic that appealed to early modern observers for its eroticizing shock value, its ironic take on the concept of Catholic »charity«, and its implied critique of patriarchal power structures. It analyses why early modern viewers found an incestuous, adult breastfeeding scene »good to think with« and aims at expanding and queering our notions of early modern sexuality. Jutta Gisela Sperling discusses the different visual contexts in which »Roman Charity« flourished and reconstructs contemporary horizons of expectation by reference to literary sources, medical practice, and legal culture.
Keywordsearly modern history; patriarchy; visual culture; fine arts; cultural history; queer studies; queer theory; visual studies; gender; art; art history; image; Caravaggio; Cimon; Roman Charity
Publication date and placeBielefeld, 2016
Theory of art