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Brueghel's Heavy Dancers: Transgressive Clothing, Class, and Culture in the Late Middle Ages

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Brueghel's Heavy Dancers: Transgressive Clothing, Class, and Culture in the Late Middle Ages Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Book News Annotation:

In this informative and entertaining study, Friedman (English, University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, emeritus) examines the literary and artistic distancing of peasants in late medieval literature and art. Through many cogent examples, he notes the ways in which the lower classes were presented as slovenly, socially unacceptable and sexually rapacious. Friedman finds these representations in literary forms such as the pastourelle, the bergerie, the serenilla and especially in satiric poems based on these forms. He believes that this reflects a fear of the urban middle class of being infiltrated by those beneath them on the social ladder. Even aristocrats feared diluting their blood by marrying someone with less breeding but more money. If peasants could wear the clothing of their masters and ape them in other ways, how could the social order be maintained? Friedman's social commentary is placed in the late Middle Ages but is relevant today. Clothing and behavior are still markers of "good breeding" and fiction still abounds with stories of Eliza Doolittles who manage to fool society into accepting them as one of the elite. Annotation ©2010 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780815632153
Author:
Friedman, John Block
Publisher:
Syracuse University Press
Author:
Friedman, John
Subject:
History - Medieval
Subject:
Poetry, Medieval -- History and criticism.
Subject:
Clothing and dress - History - Medieval, 500-
Subject:
Art - General
Series:
Medieval Studies
Publication Date:
20100531
Binding:
Hardcover
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
361
Dimensions:
10.20x7.10x1.20 in. 1.90 lbs.

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » General
History and Social Science » Literary History » General
History and Social Science » Western Civilization » Medieval
History and Social Science » World History » Medieval and Renaissance

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