Kinship Matters: An Immodest Proposal

  • Linda Marie RouillardEmail author
Part of the The New Middle Ages book series (TNMA)


This chapter traces the narrative history of the incest motif used in various mythologies and summarizes anthropological and medieval definitions of incest, which are central to cultural identity, but which can vary across different cultures and historical periods. It also considers incestuous behavior allowed to the elite, as well as the strategic, political uses of claims of incest to exit undesirable, or no longer useful unions, or to denigrate enemies. This discussion informs our analysis of La Manekine and its use of the incest motif to consider such issues as the selection of marriage partners and inheritance.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of ToledoToledoUSA

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