From Gluttony to Enlightenment

From Gluttony to Enlightenment : The World of Taste in Early Modern Europe

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Scorned since antiquity as low and animal, the sense of taste is celebrated today as an ally of joy, a source of adventure, and an arena for pursuing sophistication. The French exalted taste as an entrA (c)e to ecstasy, and revolutionized their cuisine and language to express this new way of engaging with the world. Viktoria von Hoffmann explores four kinds of early modern texts--culinary, medical, religious, and philosophical--to follow taste's ascent from the sinful to the beautiful. Combining food studies and sensory history, she takes readers on an odyssey that redefined a fundamental human experience. Scholars and cooks rediscovered a vast array of ways to prepare and present foods. Far-sailing fleets returned to Europe bursting with new vegetables, exotic fruits, and pungent spices. Hosts refined notions of hospitality in the home while philosophers pondered the body and its perceptions. As von Hoffmann shows, these labors produced a sea change in perception and thought, one that moved taste from the base realm of the tongue to the ethereal heights of more

Product details

  • Paperback | 282 pages
  • 156 x 235 x 22.86mm | 408.23g
  • University of Illinois Press
  • Baltimore, United States
  • English
  • 0252082141
  • 9780252082146
  • 1,719,178

About Viktoria Von Hoffman

Viktoria von Hoffmann is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of more

Review quote

Von Hoffmann's study gives a comprehensive overview of writings on early modern taste from the standpoint of cuisine, medicine, religion, and philosophy. Rich and thoroughly researched.--Emma C. Spary, author of Eating the Enlightenment: Food and the Sciences in Paris, 1670 -1760 A highly intelligent and well-documented intellectual history of taste in the early modern period. It gave me dozens of topics to consider writing about.--James McWilliams, author of The Pecan: A History of America's Native Nut "A fascinating read. . . . Recommended."--Choiceshow more