The Story of 0: Prostitutes and Other Good-for-Nothings in the Renaissance

The Story of 0: Prostitutes and Other Good-for-Nothings in the Renaissance

by Michele Sharon Jaffe
     
 

This work unfolds the idea of "nothing" out of a Titian painting of Danaë and the shower of gold. Jaffee's philological and pictorial argument links, across several languages, such seemingly disparate concepts as money, coins, mothers (through the mint's matrix), subjects, courtiers, prostitutes (through etymologies that join minting, standing-under, standing-for… See more details below

Overview

This work unfolds the idea of "nothing" out of a Titian painting of Danaë and the shower of gold. Jaffee's philological and pictorial argument links, across several languages, such seemingly disparate concepts as money, coins, mothers (through the mint's matrix), subjects, courtiers, prostitutes (through etymologies that join minting, standing-under, standing-for), ciphers, codes, and the codex form. This ambitious book is a cultural history of the "cipher" zero as code and as nothing, as the absence of value and the place-holder constructing value. It traces the wide-ranging implications of "nothing"--not only in mathematics but also in literature.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674839519
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
09/28/1999
Series:
Harvard Studies in Comparative Literature Series, #45
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
176
Product dimensions:
6.17(w) x 9.23(h) x 0.48(d)

Table of Contents

Preface

I.O.U.

Ground Zero

1. Counting

2. Counting Becomes Accounting

3. Code Inside the Codex

4. Petrarch

5. From Petrarch to Petrarchism

Conclusion: Nothing More

Appendix: Bellaso's Method 3

Bibliography

Index and Glossary

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