Shame as a Means of Punishment
By Satu Lidman
Paper given at the Nordic Conference on the History of Ideas, Helsinki 2001
Introduction: In the conference I presented my paper in the session “Identity and Publicity”. I found this title very appropriate to my subject. After all, the big question in my work is the relations between the community and a criminal. My main concepts are honor and shame, and they were not only inner or personal, but very public values in the late medieval German society, at least in the sense of the criminal justice system and the dishonoring punishments.
The paper in the conference was based on my master’s thesis: “Auss liebe der gerechtigkeyt, vmb gemeines nutz willen. A Study on Shame as a Means of Punishment in the Late Medieval Germany” (University of Joensuu, 2000). My aim was to tell generally what this was all about and also to give the audience a glance into the doctoral thesis I am now beginning to write.