Medieval Monsters, in Theory and Practice
Keywords:Middle Ages , Teratology , Disability Studies
AbstractThe past two decades have witnessed a plethora of studies on the medieval monster. These studies have contributed significantly to our understanding of religion, art, literature, and science in the Middle Ages. However, a tendency to treat the medieval monster in purely symbolic and psychological terms ignores the lived experiences of impaired medieval people and their culture’s attitudes toward them. With the aid of recent insights provided by disability studies, this article aims to confront “real” medieval monsters – e.g., physically impaired human beings – in both their human and monstrous aspects.