Savoring Power, Consuming the Times: The Metaphors of Food by Pina Palma

By Pina Palma

Pina Palma’s Savoring strength, eating the days: The Metaphors of nutrition in Medieval and Renaissance Italian Literature is an cutting edge examine the writings of 5 vital Italian authors—Boccaccio’s Decameron, Pulci’s Morgante, Boiardo’s Innamorato, Ariosto’s Furioso,and Aretino’s Ragionamento. throughout the prism of gastronomy, Palma examines those key works within the Western literary canon, bringing into concentration how their authors use meals and gastronomy as a method to critique the social, political, theological, philosophical, and cultural ideals that represent the material of the society during which they live.
Palma starts with the anthropological precept that meals represents the common transformation of nature into tradition and that it features as a language that distinguishes each society and its tradition from others. this implies that food—its coaching, presentation, and consumption—is greater than only a resource of nourishment. fairly, Palma argues, foodstuffs functionality as moral and aesthetic tools during which the literary hero’s virtues and flaws, achievements and screw ups, might be gauged. foodstuff additionally serves as a way to keep up, in addition to to barter, strength, social hierarchy, and relationships among the strong and the powerless. concerning 3 centuries that have been pivotal for Italian tradition, literature, and heritage, in addition to 3 literary genres, Palma’s research connects the descriptions and references to foodstuff present in those works with the broader tradition of Italy within the past due medieval and early smooth period. 
"With readability and wit, Pina Palma has used the principal metaphor of foodstuff to discover abruptly clean dimensions of Renaissance highbrow traditions. Her attention-grabbing and unique exploration of the connections among nutrients and sexuality, political strength, ethical hypocrisy, ascetic self-discipline of the physique, and the area of the appetites in a range of key Italian Renaissance works is certain to interact historians in addition to literary scholars." —Giuseppe Mazzotta, Yale University

"This very good quantity examines the various significant works of Italian medieval and Renaissance literature from the point of view in their references to meals and its intake. It makes a truly major contribution to Italian experiences (in its a number of different types) and will also be of curiosity to non-Italianists for the insights and knowledge it offers for different geographical parts and literatures in late-medieval/early-modern Europe." —Konrad Eisenbichler, college of Toronto
"Savoring strength, eating the Times isn't easily a ebook approximately foodstuff in Italian literature. it's a refined and far-reaching paintings of feedback, which discloses an unique element of the Renaissance. not just does meals offer a fashion of having access to a privileged standpoint at the Renaissance spiritual, philosophical, and ethical considering; however it can be the appropriate technique of development an unforeseen internet of relationships among authors." —Salvatore Silvano Nigro, Libera Universita di Lingue e Comunicazione, IULM

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Extra info for Savoring Power, Consuming the Times: The Metaphors of Food in Medieval and Renaissance Italian Literature

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Against the inflexible idealism humanism champions, Ariosto conceives Ruggiero, the fictional Este forebear. This knight, much like his literary antecedents, tests the possibilities that the courtly universe offers. Through this, the poet discloses that the gratification of immediate physical needs and desires, rather than abstract idealized rules, drives human actions. What distinguishes Ruggiero from the heroes studied in the earlier chapters are his transformations into an acquiescent pawn in the hands of Atlante and Alcina.

The personal wants, corruption, and selfishness these characters privilege above principles, honor, valor, and duties emphasize the shift from the practice the Gospel proclaimed and Augustine championed. Thus, in the cases of the heroes considered in this study the roles of eater and eaten pertain specifically to the worldly circumstances in which they become ensnared out of sheer egotism. Because for them the “I” is the sole purposeful end of their actions, they imperil social stability. Through this, the authors considered launch a sustained social, cultural, philosophical, and political critique of their times.

69 On the surface of it, this encounter could be interpreted as a representation of another type of human failing the Pilgrim must face on his way to purification. The lack of self-control gluttony presupposes results in moral failure; and this causes the soul to suffer eternal punishment. This reading of Ciacco’s sin could be more or less on target if it were not for a crucial fact that sets this sinner, and his sin, apart from the others. Indeed, it is to the glutton Ciacco that the Pilgrim turns to ask about Florence’s political future.

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