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Cassone Painting, Humanism and Gender in Early Modern Italy

Cassone Painting, Humanism and Gender in Early Modern Italy

Out of Print

Part of Cambridge Studies in New Art History and Criticism

  • Date Published: March 1999
  • availability: Unavailable - out of print August 2007
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521583930

Out of Print

Unavailable - out of print August 2007
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About the Authors
  • Overlooked in traditional studies of Italian Art, cassone (decorated chest) painting was nonetheless a popular genre in Early Renaissance Tuscany. Made by anonymous painters for undocumented patrons, these decorated chests display 'high' art subject matter, a contradiction that has discouraged the study of domestic pictures within traditional art history. In this study, Cristelle Baskins questions the traditional readings of cassone imagery as merely didactic or moralising. Drawing on historical context and poststructuralist textual interpretation, she argues that these pieces performed an important role in the socialisation and gender formation of women during the Renaissance. Invariably depicting exemplary women from classical mythology, cassone, Baskins demonstrates, invite a range of responses, ranging from coercion to pleasure. Her study also shows how these domestic pictures contribute to revisionist approaches within cultural and literary studies of the Renaissance.

    • Focuses attention on domestic/secular art (often unrepresented in the history of Italian Renaissance art)
    • Uses gender studies as a means of re-reading Renaissance Humanist texts and images
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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 1999
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521583930
    • length: 278 pages
    • dimensions: 263 x 186 x 23 mm
    • weight: 0.95kg
    • contains: 64 b/w illus.
    • availability: Unavailable - out of print August 2007
  • Table of Contents

    Object lessons: a cassone in the Della Famiglia
    1. Le Nozze di Emilia: Amazons, armed and beautiful
    2. Dido: taking the gold out of Carthage
    3. Camilla: Filialogy and the family romance
    4. Hersilia and the sabine women: Piece-making
    5. Lucretia: dangerous familiars
    6. Virginia/Virginius: her body, himself.

  • Author

    Cristelle L. Baskins, Tufts University, Massachusetts

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