Renaissance Food from Rabelais to Shakespeare
Culinary Readings and Culinary Histories
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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: FranÃ§ois 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.