Renaissance Food from Rabelais to Shakespeare: Culinary Readings and Culinary Histories

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Joan Fitzpatrick
Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2010 - History - 171 pages
Providing a unique perspective on a fascinating aspect of early modern culture, this volume focuses on the role of food and diet as represented in the works of a range of European authors, including Shakespeare, from the late medieval period to the mid seventeenth century. The volume is divided into several sections, the first of which is "Eating in Early Modern Europe"; contributors consider cultural formations and cultural contexts for early modern attitudes to food and diet, moving from the more general consideration of European and English manners to the particular consideration of historical attitudes toward specific foodstuffs. The second section is "Early Modern Cookbooks and Recipes," which takes readers into the kitchen and considers the development of the cultural artifact we now recognize as the cookbook, how early modern recipes might "work" today, and whether cookery books specifically aimed at women might have shaped domestic creativity. Part Three, "Food and Feeding in Early Modern Literature" offers analysis of the engagement with food and feeding in key literary European and English texts from the early sixteenth to the early seventeenth century: Fran­cois Rabelais's Quart livre, Shakespeare's plays, and seventeenth-century dramatic prologues. The essays included in this collection are international and interdisciplinary in their approach; they incorporate the perspectives of historians, cultural commentators, and literary critics who are leaders in the field of food and diet in early modern culture.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Eating in Early Modern Europe
9
Crammed with Distressful Bread? Bakers and the Poor in Early Modern England
11
Fishes Fowl and La Fleur de toute cuysine Gaster and Gastronomy in Rabelaiss Quart livre
25
Early Modern Cookbooks and Recipes
53
Recipes for Knowledge Makers Knowledge Traditions Paracelsian Recipes and the Invention of the Cookbook 16001660
55
Cooking as Research Methodology Experiments in Renaissance Cuisine
73
Distillation Transformations in and out of the Kitchen
89
Food and Feeding in Early Modern Literature
105
Performances of the Banquet Course in Early Modern Drama
107
I Must Eat my Dinner Shakespeares Foods from Apples to Walrus
127
Narrative and Dramatic Sauces Reflections upon Creativity Cookery and Culinary Metaphor in Some Early SeventeenthCentury Dramatic Prologues
145
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About the author (2010)

Joan Fitzpatrick (Lecturer, Loughborough University) is author of Food in Shakespeare (Ashgate, 2007) and a forthcoming Athlone dictionary entitled Shakespeare and the Language of Food.

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