Bad joke, I apologize. In class last time, we touched on the idea of “matter that isn’t matter”. Think back to when Bynum discussed the paradox of Jesus’ body (material) ascending to heaven (divine). Consider the devils’ chains in The Incestuous Daughter. Does a similar paradox exist here? The chains change how the woman behaves. Does this make them “real”? Does it make them material?
I feel like this story, along with the Jealous Wife, is about how, as much as the divine can be an unpredictable force as disscussed in Bynum, then the same can be said for the devil, as seen through the chains in the Incestuous Daughter. The idea that if God’s is a evident and powerful force then the Devil must be as well.
While part of me, as a writer is taking the text to task with that there is know real insight into the daughter, as to the fact that the daughter kills her father and mother, to keep them from finding out, meaning that there is text missing, meaning, this is not the first time something like this has happened to the daughter. This is an example of medieval logic, of victim blaming and as well as neglect of evidence of sexual abuse.
If the paradox lies within the body (material) mixing with the idea of heaven (the divine), I think it’s safe to say that the woman (material) mixing with the chains of the devil (the ‘divine’, though in this case, the profane) can be paradoxical in the sense as well. Likewise, if heaven and the divine can be matter that isn’t matter, then so can the profane found within hell and it’s various denizens. I think the chains, if interpreted as truly happening within the context of the story, can be considering a material with an agentive force being exerted upon the woman. Even if the chains exert the will of the devil himself, it’s still an immaterial material that acts outside ‘human’ will, which I’m sure is important in classifying it as a nonhuman material.