The Historical Anthropology of Early Modern Italy: Essays on Perception and Communication

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Overview

Based on archival material from the cities of Genoa, Milan, Venice, Florence, Rome, and Naples, as well as on published sources, such as travel journals, and artistic representations, this volume presents an original view of the culture of early modern Italy. The book addresses particular themes - specifically those of perception and communication - as well as serving to exemplify modes of analysis in the currently developing field of historical anthropology. In the first part of the book, Peter Burke examines the stereotyped ways in which contemporaries perceived social groups such as saints, beggars, and working women, and shows how these stereotypes were used, consciously and unconsciously, both by the authorities and by ordinary people.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Burke's style is deft and sure at the same time as it is erudite. He brings together deep knowledge, primary documentation, systematic analysis, dazzling insight. In the anthropological style, he often starts with a text. Like a historian, he puts that text into a context and examines how the structure, process or activity under scrutiny changes over time. The volume is well written, tells stories of human as well as scholarly interest, and analyses texts and events in lively and suggestive ways, often with a surprise ending or twist to the explanation.' Louise Tilly, New School for Social Research
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521320412
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 5/28/2004
  • Pages: 292
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Table of Contents

List of illustrations; Preface; References; Part I. Introduction: 1. The historical anthropology of early modern Italy; 2. The sources: outsiders and insiders; Part II. Modes of Perception: 3. Classifying the people: the census as collective representation; 4. The bishop's questions and the people's religion; 5. How to be a Counter-Reformation saint; 6. Perceiving a counter-culture; Part III. Modes of Communication: 7. Languages and anti-languages in early modern Italy; 8. Insult and blasphemy in early modern Italy; 9. The uses of literacy in early modern Italy; 10. Conspicuous consumption in seventeenth-century Italy; 11. The presentation of self in the Renaissance portrait; 12. Sacred rulers, royal priests: rituals of the early modern popes; 13. The carnival of Venice; 14. The virgin of the Carmine and the revolt of Masaniello; 15. Rituals of healing in early modern Italy; Part IV. Conclusion: 16. The repudiation of ritual in early modern Europe; Notes; Bibliography; Index.
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