Gender and Material Culture is the first archaeological study to focus on the lives of medieval religious women and as such represents the first complete case study in the archaeology of gender. Despite the hundreds of archaeology books and articles on monasticism, not one has considered that womens monasticism may have differed from mens. Instead, traditional scholarship has dismissed nunneries as poor or failed monasteries. Although recent historians have begun to re-evaluate their approach to the study of religious women, they have yet to consider the material culture of these monasteries. In its comparison of monasteries for men and women, Gender and Material Culture shows how the categories of gender greatly influenced the design and organization of medieval monasteries, their landscape contexts and strategies of economic management, the form and development of buildings and their symbolic and iconographic content. The archaeology of these institutionsmore specifically reveals stark contrasts in the social and economic status of monasteries and their social links with patrons. The result is an innovative and insightful study that ultimately proves how the category of gender is an essential part of archaeological analysis.