Carolingian World Book Review

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Book Review Valerie Garver’s book titled Women and Aristocratic Culture in the Carolingian World, examines the lives of Carolingian women, primarily elite, and how they are seen by others. Her work is set up to examine just how women were able to actively shape the culture of the Carolingian time period. The chapters are broken into four main themes to understand, being beauty, family, prudence and wealth. Garver also adds a chapter at the end that showcases textile work produced from women of the time. Through the use of themes and numerous textual evidence, Garver is able to drive her points across to the reader. Just by looking at each chapter, one could find countless examples of how Garver is able to produce evidence for what she is analyzing.…show more content…
A reader is presented with this marvelous descriptions, but a picture of that person, church or memorial would only help in the understanding. She does however provide pictorial evidence of the textile work of these women. Although the majority of the book talks about the elite women, when Garver adds the last chapter about the textile work, she gives life to the women who created the pieces. In the text, she writes “women of low and servile status performed the bulk of textile work,… and women of high social status almost certainly directed much of that work”. It is clear that these elite women didn’t do these works, but women in general were able to produce these crafts. I think it is safe to say that the reason for adding in the last chapter is to shine a light on all women of that time period. On page 247, Garver shows a large embroidered piece. The piece is created with patterned silk, tablet-woven bands and elaborate embroidery. This is one of the few pictorial evidence that Garver showcases and rightfully so. Although the picture is black and white, you can still get a sense of what the colors might have been and just how thorough the work is. I still do wish that there had been more pictures to show what she is explaining throughout the text, but can only image getting and finding well documented illustrations from this time period could be
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