Dreaming of Cockaigne: Medieval Fantasies of the Perfect Life / Edition 1

Dreaming of Cockaigne: Medieval Fantasies of the Perfect Life / Edition 1

by Herman Pleij
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0231117035

ISBN-13: 9780231117036

Pub. Date: 06/25/2003

Publisher: Columbia University Press

Imagine a dreamland where roasted pigs wander about with knives in their backs to make carving easy, where grilled geese fly directly into one's mouth, where cooked fish jump out of the water and land at one's feet. The weather is always mild, the wine flows freely, sex is readily available, and all people enjoy eternal youth.

Such is Cockaigne. Portrayed in

Overview

Imagine a dreamland where roasted pigs wander about with knives in their backs to make carving easy, where grilled geese fly directly into one's mouth, where cooked fish jump out of the water and land at one's feet. The weather is always mild, the wine flows freely, sex is readily available, and all people enjoy eternal youth.

Such is Cockaigne. Portrayed in legend, oral history, and art, this imaginary land became the most pervasive collective dream of medieval times-an earthly paradise that served to counter the suffering and frustration of daily existence and to allay anxieties about an increasingly elusive heavenly paradise.

Illustrated with extraordinary artwork from the Middle Ages, Herman Pleij's Dreaming of Cockaigne is a spirited account of this lost paradise and the world that brought it to life. Pleij takes three important texts as his starting points for an inspired of the panorama of ideas, dreams, popular religion, and literary and artistic creation present in the late Middle Ages. What emerges is a well-defined picture of the era, furnished with a wealth of detail from all of Europe, as well as Asia and America.

Pleij draws upon his thorough knowledge of medieval European literature, art, history, and folklore to describe the fantasies that fed the tales of Cockaigne and their connections to the central obsessions of medieval life.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780231117036
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
Publication date:
06/25/2003
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
544
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

List of IllustrationsPart 1. The Forfeiture of Happiness: The Beginning 1. Paradise Lost2. Contours of a Book3. The Power of LiteraturePart 2. Texts as Maps 4. Rhyming Texts L and B, Prose Text G5. The Two Rhyming Texts on the Land of Cockaigne6. Recitation and Writing7. Oral Structures in Writing8. The Existing Potential9. The Prose Text on LuilekkerlandPart 3. Eating to Forget 10. Eating Habits11. Hunger and Scarcity12. The Topos of Hunger13. The Intoxicating Effect of Fasting14. Gorging in Self-Defense15. Food in Motion16. Literary RefreshmentPart 4. Paradise Refurbished 17. The Land of Cockaigne as Paradise18. Never Say Die19. Heavenly Rewards20. Other Paradises21. Lovely Places, Golden Ages22. Wonder Gardens and Pleasure Parks23. Dreams of ImmortalityPart 5. The Imagination Journeys Forth 24. Geographical Musings25. Real Dreamworlds26. Wonders of East and West27. Fanciful Destinations28. Virtual DreamlandsPart 6. Heretical Excesses 29. The Thousand-Year Reign of Peace and Prosperity30. Heresies of the Free Spirit31. Sex Adam-and-Eve Style32. Low-Country HeterodoxyPart 7. Learning as a Matter of Survival 33. Didactic Differences34. Topsy-Turvy Worlds35. Hard Times36. Moderation, Ambition, and Decorum37. Lessons in PragmatismPart 8. Dreaming of Cockaigne: The End 38. The Name Cockaigne39. A Depreciated Cultural Asset40. From Countryside to Town41. The Necessity of FictionAppendixes1. Middle Dutch Rhyming Texts on Cockaigne2. Dutch Prose Text of 1546 on Luilekkerland3. Dutch Poems Appearing in English TranslationSourcesBibliographyIndex

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