Margery Kempe did something that many people (especially women) would not dare to do- she broke away from the identity that her society had molded for her. The Book of Margery Kempe is one of the most astonishing documents found of the late medieval era and is the first autobiography to have been discovered. Margery Kempe does not shy away from telling the story of the personal and intricate details about her adventurous life. It is hard to say what influenced Kempe to go through such lengths to have her book written. Many think she wanted others to understand and witness how difficult it was to live through the social norms and expectations as a typical wife and mother of the 14th century. Little did she know, her life story would
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Kempe was often oblivious when it came to the retort of her visions and interactions with Christ. Occasionally she would try to hold in her fit of tears to thwart her embarrassment in front of the townspeople, “…she would keep it in as much as she might that the people should not have heard it for noying of them,” (389). Often times, however, she would go to great lengths with her visions and not impede herself from acting fanatic and delusional in public.
She was so much affected to the manhood of Christ that when she saw women in Rome bear children in their arms, if she might witen that they were any menchildren, she should then cry, roar, and weep as though she had seen Christ in His childhood. (389)
Not only did she run up to women who held a child that she believed to be a boy and caused an emotional scene, but oftentimes, she would kiss the baby as if he were Christ and she was worshipping him. This behavior is not only characterized as unaccepted in a social aspect, but it also astounded people and drew attention towards her. Because of behaviors like this, people began to recognize Kempe and she soon became a commonly loathed public figure.
Once Kempe became known for her sporadic and unacceptable behavior, people began to speculate her sanity versus the idea of her simply being a religious