Image on the Edge: The Margins of Medieval Art / Edition 1

Image on the Edge: The Margins of Medieval Art / Edition 1

by Michael Camille
     
 

ISBN-10: 0674443624

ISBN-13: 9780674443624

Pub. Date: 01/28/1992

Publisher: Harvard University Press

A gargoyle lurks at the corner of a Gothic cathedral. A monstrous face peers from the margin of a medieval text. At the far reaches of cultural spaces a chorus of odd and arresting figures assembles, commenting endlessly on the world it surveys. What these characters are doing at the margins is the subject of Michael Camille's new book, an exhilarating account of the…  See more details below

Overview

A gargoyle lurks at the corner of a Gothic cathedral. A monstrous face peers from the margin of a medieval text. At the far reaches of cultural spaces a chorus of odd and arresting figures assembles, commenting endlessly on the world it surveys. What these characters are doing at the margins is the subject of Michael Camille's new book, an exhilarating account of the medieval imagination testing--and defining--its boundaries. Where others have isolated the marginal image as a detail, Camille considers such marginalia in direct and complex relation to the whole work. Ranging with graceful authority through the culture of the Middle Ages, from art to architecture, music to illustrated manuscripts, courtly romances to social rituals, he finds in the margins a distorted yet apt reflection of medieval conventions. It is here at the edge--of the monastery, the cathedral, the court, the city--that medieval artists found room for experimentation, for glossing, parodying, modernizing, and questioning cultural authority without ever undermining it. Viewing marginalia in their proper social and cultural context, Camille reveals scandalous and subversive aspects, as well as apparently paradoxical stabilizing functions. He rejects oppositions such as high and low, profane and sacred, and instead projects a vision of medieval culture in which marginal resistance, inversion, and transgression play an integral, even necessary, role. Chimeras as disruptions of religious order; gargoyles as embodiments of fears and temptations; scatological drawings as manifestations of crisis in the chivalric class; charivari as ritual reinscriptions of social norms: Image on the Edge presents a vivid picture of a medieval world in which contradictions were not only tolerated, but worked with exquisite detail into the very fabric of society. With a richness of expression in keeping with his subject--and with a wealth of sumptuous illustrations--Camille illuminates these details; in doing so, he

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674443624
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
01/28/1992
Series:
Essays in Art and Culture Series
Edition description:
REPRINT
Pages:
176
Product dimensions:
6.18(w) x 9.22(h) x 0.63(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments7
Preface9
1Making Margins11
2In the Margins of the Monastery56
3In the Margins of the Cathedral77
4In the Margins of the Court99
5In the Margins of the City129
6The End of the Edge153
References161
Bibliography164
List of Illustrations172

Read More

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >