Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation
Art (Creative) and Art History with a concentration in Art History, MA
Utilizing an interdisciplinary approach to a variety of material, textual, and literary evidence, the aim of this thesis is to shed light on the realities – rather than stereotypes -- of an important aspect of late ancient women’s experience: the use of ritual power. Patterns of gender differentiation in late antique Egyptian magic are investigated and shown to be connected to the particular aims to which numinous powers were employed, aims which were in turn bound up with the social roles expected of each sex. The majority of this study consists of a series of case studies of different types of women’s rituals of power, which emphasize examples of significant trends in ritual iconography, praxis, and context, both those which were typical of late antique Egyptian magic as a whole, and those which were uniquely female in character. The fact that female practitioners came from a wide array of socio-economic, ethnic, and religious backgrounds is also addressed.
McGinnis, Meghan Paalz, "Maidens, matrons, and magicians : women and personal ritual power in late antique Egypt." (2012). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 2265.