Domenico Rizzo

«Pares sed non aequales». The bodies of married people in moral theologians and doctors of medicine

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This article argues that the institution of matrimony, as a legitimate and legitimating arena for sexual relations, is a crucial object for investigating the historical construction of the relationship between gender identity and sexuality. An analysis of some 17th century authors - doctors, moral theologians and confessors - demonstrates that matrimony requires the production of knowledge about the body that defines the boundaries of «normality» and «capability». In addition, the discipline of conjugal sexuality constructed gender roles through a dialectical relationship between canon law, moral theology, and medical-scientific knowledge.

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