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Tangentially Speaking

456 – Dr. Eleanor Janega (Medieval Sexuality)

By January 4, 20214 Comments

Eleanor Janega is a very smart, very funny medieval historian, specializing in late medieval sexuality, apocalyptic thought, propaganda, and the urban experience in general, and in central Europe more particularly. She teaches medieval and early modern history at a number of universities across London.

She considers herself to be “a sad, sad medievalist,” who hopes to “explain the medieval influences on the everyday world, and hopefully to get people through the quotidian grind of life in late stage capitalism.” A worthy cause if ever there was one!

Dr. Janega’s site, Twitter feed, and Patreon account.

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Intro music: “Brightside of the Sun,” by Basin and Range,“The Summer of My Mind,” by Highly Portable; “Star People 97,” by George Michael.


  • Re. the idea that it doesn’t make sense to raise dogs for human consumption because they compete for the same food eaten by people, I would point to Mesoamerican cultures and how they raised the hairless dog breed known as Xoloitzcuintles –made famous by the movie ‘Coco’– not just for companionship but ALSO for food.

    Perhaps one of the reasons they chose to do it is because these animals are pretty low maintenance, and also very mobile; in the novel Aztec by Gary Jennings he portrays the guild of nomadic merchants known as the “Pochtecas” as traveling with herds of these dogs from village to village across all the regions controlled by the Mexica empire.

    • Re. bestiality and why it was so demonized in Medieval times, since syphilis is hypothesized to have come from sexual contact with cattle, perhaps this is another example of myths, folklore and irrational beliefs encoding valuable advice for the survival of the community –carnal communion with animals is SINFUL… also you might spread an epidemic!

  • Graeme says:

    I’m really surprised Highly Portable doesn’t have more of a following. He’s got an excellent Americana vibe going on. Go give him some support!

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