Juxtaposing the insights of feminism with those of marxism, psychoanalysis, and deconstruction, this unique collection creates new common ground for women's studies and Renaissance studies. An outstanding array of scholarsliterary critics, art critics, and historiansreexamines the role of women and their relations with men during the Renaissance. In the process, the contributors enrich the emerging languages of and about women, gender, and sexual difference. Throughout, the essays focus on the structures of Renaissance patriarchy that organized power relations both in the state and in the family. They explore the major conequences of patriarchy for womentheir marginalization and lack of identity and powerand the ways in which individual women or groups of women broke, or in some cases deliberately circumvented, the rules that defined them as a secondary sex. Topics covered include representations of women in literature and art, the actual work done by women both inside and outside of the home, and the writings of women themselves. In analyzing the rhetorical strategies that "marginalized" historical and fictional women, these essays counter scholarly and critical traditions that continue to exhibit patriarchal biases.Ferguson, Margaret W. is the author of 'Rewriting the Renaissance The Discourses of Sexual Difference in Early Modern Europe' with ISBN 9780226243146 and ISBN 0226243141.