Bad Boy Romance:
I was waiting to see that flash of desire in her eyes. You know, the thing all girls get when they look right at me for the first time. But there was nothing...
She looked almost good enough to eat in her strapless red top and elegant black pantsuit. Her hair was long and blonde and her skin was tanned a golden brown. She looked a bit like a goddess in disguise; like you’d be able to screw her back to glory with no problem. She’d obviously not had any action in the bedroom for a while. I could discern this immediately from the way she touched her hair and glanced over my physique in a fleeting, give-away moment.
“What's up baby, what do you wanna know?” I said and gave her my most winning smile. Then I did the trick with my biceps; flexing them in such a way that it appeared to be an involuntary display of magnificent muscle. "That should melt this little ice queen journalist," I thought as I watched her closely for a reaction.
“How does it feel to be the symbol of male chauvinism to a generation of young men?”
I have to admit she had me stunned there for a moment. No “How do you feel after that magnificent victory?” or “Please explain how you managed to throw that perfect split‑second pass that won the match.” Just a straight face as she basically accused me of being a bastard.
I kind of liked it.
The translated manuscripts of the lives of St Juliana and St Agatha portray the struggle of their female protagonists against the unjust constraints imposed on them by their terrestrial lords; a suffering they endured in the apparent hope of gaining the ultimate reward of a place in heaven. The depiction of their struggle has important implications for the self-image of the medieval women reading these texts, insofar as it sanctions resistance to male authority under special circumstances.
In the first part of this essay, consideration will be given to the general historic matrix of the stories and their intended audience. This will shed more light on the motivation behind their specific composition.
A Fictitious Audience
Some commentators have highlighted the fact that the narrated experiences of the Saints in these stories are unusually sophisticated and on a higher academic level than the ordinary poems which frequently appeared in text over the same period (Millett, Bella. The Audience of the Saints Lives of the Katherine Group. University of Southampton. 1988, p128). It is possible that the manuscripts, as we have them today, reflect a subtle attempt by the authors to reach a more intellectual audience than the casual reader to whom the stories are fictitiously addressed. This is a sign of the time; liberal thought had to be hidden in unassuming publications to prevent persecution.