Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-5c569c448b-ph4cd Total loading time: 0.332 Render date: 2022-07-02T06:07:28.571Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true } hasContentIssue true
This chapter is part of a book that is no longer available to purchase from Cambridge Core

2 - Echoes, Whispers, Ventriloquisms: On Recovering Women's Voices from the Court of York in the Later Middle Ages

from Part I - Shaping Women's Testimony

Jeremy Goldberg
Affiliation:
University of York
Bronach Kane
Affiliation:
Bath Spa University
Fiona Williamson
Affiliation:
National University of Malaysia
Get access

Summary

The records of Inquisition and of instance (or private) litigation within the church courts are singularly attractive to scholars. Both are associated with the production of depositions, the written records of the responses given by deponents to questions put to them. Such depositions offer the tantalizing – but perhaps elusive – possibility of recovering the actual words, thoughts, beliefs and experience of a variety of people, female and male, old and young, poor and wealthy. John Arnold, however, has used Inquisition records to argue that deponents' responses were shaped by the questions posed and that the questions posed in turn reflected the Inquisitors' own agenda and understanding of the nature of heresy and of heretics. We are permitted to see, therefore, those who were subjected to the process of Inquisition only as they are represented within an inquisitorial discourse, which, in Arnold's words, ‘cannot recapture the “true” voices of the past’. Arnold's statement is of course a truism. How can we ever recapture ‘true’ voices and how would we recognize one if we did? In the absence of archival recordings we can never access past speech directly. We are dependent at best on voices as ventriloquized by the clerks who recorded the depositions more or less conscientiously and oft en in a language – Latin – other than the vernacular of the deponent.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Pickering & Chatto
First published in: 2014

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×