ISBN : 9780199590322
This book articulates a new approach to medieval aesthetic values, emphasizing the sensory and emotional basis of all medieval arts, their love of play and fine craftsmanship, of puzzles, and of strong contrasts. Written for a general educated audience as well as students and scholars in the field, it offers an understanding of medieval literature and art that is rooted in the perceptions and feelings of ordinary life, made up of play and laughter as well as serious work. Medieval stylistic values of variety, sweetness, good taste, and ordinary beauty are grounded in classical and medieval biological theories of change and flux in the human body, not only in symbolism and theology. The book will appeal to all lovers of medieval arts, literature, architecture, music, and painting, as well as serious students of religion and the language of beauty.
Introduction: Making Sense
1. Artful Play
2. Sensory Complexion and Style
3. Taking the Bitter with the Sweet
4. Taste and Good Taste
6. Ordinary Beauty