Contrary to many opinions, love and marriage have been as much subject to historical change and development as all other human cultural manifestations. This talk addresses the question how marriage and love were handled in the Middle Ages and the age of the Protestant Reformation. We will look at numerous literary and art-historical examples reflecting on marriage life in the past and study what lessons we can gain from those early examples. Conflicts and strife as reflected in medieval documents, for instance, allow us today to understand our own problems and how to find a new path toward a better world of love and marriage.
Albrecht Classen is University Distinguished Professor of German Studies at The University of Arizona. He has researched and taught a wide variety of topics focusing on the European Middle Ages, the history of the Southwest (history of German-Speaking Jesuits), and the culture and history of Germany/Austria/Switzerland. He has published close to 80 books and close to 600 articles. He is the editor of two journals, Mediaevistik and Humanities Open Access.