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ERIC Number: EJ996939
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0030-9230
A Call for Sobriety: Sixteenth-Century Educationalists and Humanist Conviviality
Verbeke, Demmy
Paedagogica Historica: International Journal of the History of Education, v49 n2 p161-173 2013
Michel Jeanneret's "A Feast of Words. Banquets and Table Talk in the Renaissance" (1987; English translation published in 1991) highlighted the celebration by Renaissance humanists of food and drink as catalysts of intellectual exchange. The author convincingly argued that Renaissance banquets served as a paradigm for the humanist body of ideas, and thus became an important setting for works of literature and erudition. This article investigates whether the use of banquets in humanist culture is also reflected in the didactic writings of the age. It focuses on the school dialogues of Desiderius Erasmus (1466?-1536) and Juan Luis Vives (1492/3-1540), which proved to be enormously popular and were--according to a 1582 preface--read in "well-nigh every school" in England and continental Europe. The article illustrates how Erasmus and Vives, especially when addressing an audience of young school boys, aimed to organize a controlled satisfaction of bodily appetites, stimulating the interchange of ideas, whilst avoiding gluttony and intoxication, which are as detrimental for intellectual exchange as they are for the individual's physical and spiritual well-being. The humanists' condemnation of excess was thus connected with their analysis of the human condition and their preoccupation that every child should realize his or her full potential as a human being. The key element in this was considered to be education, which trained children to rise above their animal instincts and desires, and prepared them to participate in society as responsible adults. (Contains 43 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)