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Venomous Tongues: Speech and Gender in Late Medieval England
Medieval moralists considered the tongue a dangerous weapon, and in the later Middle Ages deviant speech became increasingly feminized. Women of all social classes risked being charged as “scolds” and prosecuted in court for insulting others or talking too much in public. This phenomenon and its consequences are examined in Venomous Tongues: Speech and Gender in Late Medieval England (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006) by Sandy Bardsley, assistant professor of history at Moravian College.