Medicinal Cannibalism in Early Modern English Literature and Culture [NOOK Book]

Overview

The human body, traded, fragmented and ingested is at the centre of The Healing Corpse, which explores the connections between early modern literary representations of the eaten body and the medical consumption of corpses. The last decade has produced a rich collection of monographs on early modern literature and the body; however, although the literature of the age is saturated with representations of cannibalism, there has been no book-length study that brings this phenomenon together with medical practices and...
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Medicinal Cannibalism in Early Modern English Literature and Culture

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Overview

The human body, traded, fragmented and ingested is at the centre of The Healing Corpse, which explores the connections between early modern literary representations of the eaten body and the medical consumption of corpses. The last decade has produced a rich collection of monographs on early modern literature and the body; however, although the literature of the age is saturated with representations of cannibalism, there has been no book-length study that brings this phenomenon together with medical practices and beliefs. Thus, while my book makes a timely contribution to the burgeoning scholarly field of early modern literature and its cultural engagements in general, its originality lies in its analysis of the medical corpse market and its ideological and figurative constructs. In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and beyond, the English pharmacological arsenal included mummy (mummia), both embalmed bodies from the Middle East and the bodies of the recently dead processed according to special recipes, as well as other bodily matter such as organs, fat, bone, blood, urine, and faeces. At the same time, Protestant Reformists constructed the Catholic belief in the real body of Christ in the eucharist sacrament as a savage act of cannibalism. Within a richly detailed medical and religious framework, my book explores the medical treatment of the human corpse and its uncanny resemblances to understandings of Christ as both food and medicine, and what writers do with this. I focus on the ways in which several sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English writers read, understand and represent corpse pharmacology and its cannibalistic implications.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230342446
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 4/12/2011
  • Series: Early Modern Cultural Studies Series
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 256
  • File size: 595 KB

Meet the Author

Louise Noble is a Lecturer in English at the University of New England, Australia. She is currently working on a new project on the hydrosocial cycle in early modern rural England.
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Table of Contents

The Pharmacological Corpse: The Practice and Rhetoric of Bodily Consumptions * The Mummy Cure: Fresh Unspotted Cadavers * Medicine, Cannibalism, and Revenge Justice: Titus Andronicus * Flesh Economies in Foreign Worlds: The Unfortunate Traveller and The Sea Voyage * Divine Matter and the Cannibal Dilemma: The Faerie Queene and Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions * The Fille Vièrge as Pharmakon: Othello and the Anniversaries * Trafficking the Human Body: Late Modern Medical Cannibalism

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