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H 245 x W 175 mm

198 pages

Iillustrated throughout in black & white with 8 colour pages

Published Apr 2017

Archaeopress Archaeology


Paperback: 9781784915780

Digital: 9781784915797

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English Literature; Food; Cooking; Middle Ages; Modern; Recipe; Shakespeare; Austen; Wordsworth; Shelley; Beeton; Dickens; Woolf; Milne; Dahl; Bridget Jones

Not just Porridge: English Literati at Table

Edited by Francesca Orestano, Michael Vickers

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Concocted in Italy by scholars of English and sifted through the judgement of the English editor, this volume traces a curious history of English literature, from the tasty and spicy recipes of the Middle Ages down to very recent times.



Introduction. Food tasted and described: a kind of literary history (Francesca Orestano) ;

Roger of Ware: a medieval masterchef in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales (Cristina Paravano) ;

Caliban’s dinner (Margaret Rose) ;

At table with Dr Johnson: food for the body, nourishment for the mind (Giovanni Iamartino) [Open Access: Download] ;

Jane Austen: appetite and sensibility (Chiara Biscella) ;

Romantic food at Dove Cottage: Dorothy Wordsworth’s cookery and kitchen garden (Anna Rudelli) ;

Percy Bysshe Shelley, a vegetarian poet (Marco Canani) ;

Mrs Beeton: cooking, science, and innovations in the Victorian kitchen (Beatrice Moja) ;

Charles Dickens from street food to the restaurant (Claudia Cremonesi) ;

Henry James goes on a diet: a chronicle of a private drama (Elena Ogliari) ;

Bennett, Strachey and the preparation of the omelette (Karin Mosca) ;

Leopold Bloom’s grilled mutton kidneys (Maria Cristina Mancini) ;

Virginia Woolf and the cooking range (Francesca Orestano) ;

A. A. Milne: Tea (and lots of honey) in the Hundred Acre Wood (Francesca Gorini) ;

Roald Dahl’s revolting food fantasies (Angela Anna Iuliucci) ;

Bridget Jones and the temptations of junk food (Ilaria Parini) ;

Coraline: frozen food vs a warm-hearted family? (Dalila Forni) ;

About the Author

Francesca Orestano, Professor of English Literature at the University of Milan, works in the areas of landscape aesthetics (William Gilpin and the picturesque, from the 18th century to present), garden history, Victorian and Dickens studies, art criticism and John Ruskin, the gothic and the baroque, and children’s literature. Recent research includes: cultural responses to the Italian Renaissance, chemistry and Victorian taste, the child reader. She has edited the 2014 issue of Cultural Perspectives on ‘History and Children’s Literature’, and since 2007 the website Michael Vickers is Professor Emeritus of Archaeology at the University of Oxford, and Emeritus Senior Research Fellow in Classical Studies at Jesus College. His research interests include the archaeology, history and literature of the Greek and Roman worlds. His latest book, Aristophanes and Alcibiades: Echoes of Contemporary History in Athenian Comedy appeared in 2015. He spends much of his time in Georgia, and is often asked to put texts in Georgian English into English English. Co-editing this volume was by way of light relief.