The World Beyond Europe in the Romance Epics of Boiardo and Ariosto

By Jo Ann Cavallo

© 2013

This study offers a sustained examination of the presentation of eastern Asia, the Middle East, and northern Africa in two of the most important chivalric epics of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, Matteo Maria Boiardo’s Orlando Innamorato (1495) and Ludovico Ariosto’s Orlando Furioso (1516). Comparing the narratological strategies used to depict non-European characters in these stories, Jo Ann Cavallo argues that Boiardo’s cosmopolitan vision of humankind increasingly became replaced by Ariosto’s crusading ideology, which emphasized a binary opposition between Christians and Saracens.

Cavallo addresses the poems’ mixing of imaginary sites and the geographical reality of a rapidly expanding globe, contextualizing them against current events and concerns, as well as ancient, medieval, and Renaissance texts influential at the time. As the prize committee for the Scaglione Publication Award for a Manuscript in Italian Literary Studies noted: “This articulate, engaging, and well-documented study represents an important work of scholarship in its cross-cultural considerations of Italian Renaissance epic poetry.”

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Product Details

  • Series: Toronto Italian Studies
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 392 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.2in x 1.2in x 9.3in
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SKU# SP003632

  • PUBLISHED JUN 2013

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    Regular Price: $92.00

    ISBN 9781442646834
  • PUBLISHED OCT 2013

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    Regular Price: $92.00

Quick Overview

“This articulate, engaging, and well-documented study represents an important work of scholarship in its cross-cultural considerations of Italian Renaissance epic poetry.”
Prize Committtee Citation, MLA Scaglione Priize for a Manuscript in Italian Literary Studies

The World Beyond Europe in the Romance Epics of Boiardo and Ariosto

By Jo Ann Cavallo

© 2013

This study offers a sustained examination of the presentation of eastern Asia, the Middle East, and northern Africa in two of the most important chivalric epics of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, Matteo Maria Boiardo’s Orlando Innamorato (1495) and Ludovico Ariosto’s Orlando Furioso (1516). Comparing the narratological strategies used to depict non-European characters in these stories, Jo Ann Cavallo argues that Boiardo’s cosmopolitan vision of humankind increasingly became replaced by Ariosto’s crusading ideology, which emphasized a binary opposition between Christians and Saracens.

Cavallo addresses the poems’ mixing of imaginary sites and the geographical reality of a rapidly expanding globe, contextualizing them against current events and concerns, as well as ancient, medieval, and Renaissance texts influential at the time. As the prize committee for the Scaglione Publication Award for a Manuscript in Italian Literary Studies noted: “This articulate, engaging, and well-documented study represents an important work of scholarship in its cross-cultural considerations of Italian Renaissance epic poetry.”

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Toronto Italian Studies
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 392 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.2in x 1.2in x 9.3in
  • Reviews

    ‘Cavallo provides a detailed and fascinating account of how a non-Christian space was represented both in the romance epic tradition and more generally in early modern Italian culture.’


    Juliann Vitullo
    Annali D’Italianistica vol 35:2016

    ‘This engagingly written book is indispensable not only for Italianists but for students and scholars of romance and epic and any other literature of the European West.’


    Goran Stanivukovic
    Renaissance & Reformation, vol 40:01:2017

    The World beyond Europe invites scholars of Italian literature to expand our spatial and cultural horizons by offering a model of original thinking and syncretic knowledge.’


    Maria Galli Stampino
    Italica vol 92:04:2015

    ‘Cavallo offers a thoroughly researched examination of the literary sources that shaped Boiardo’s narrative and Ariosto’s interpretation of the material… This is an incredibly rich and rigorous study of Boiardo’s literary world.’


    Andrea Rizzi
    Parergon vol 32:01:2015

    ‘This is an excellent study with well-crafted narratives, replete with insights and detailed analysis… This book should appeal not only to Italianists but also to scholars interested in the debate on late medieval and early modern cultural encounters.’


    Giorgos Plakotos
    Sixteenth Century Journal vol 46:03:2015

    “This is a valuable book on perhaps the two most important romance epics of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Continuing from her fascinating previous study, Jo Ann Cavallo introduces an international and geographic perspective to uncover the ideology behind Ariosto’s rewriting of Boiardo’s plots. A book like this, which goes into patient detail, is crucial for scholars in other fields who might be unfamiliar with the discussed texts and need to be guided. Its research is state-of-the-art, and it is well deserving of the prestigious Scaglione Prize.”


    Charles S. Ross, Professor, Department of English, and Chair, Comparative Literature Program, Purdue University

    “This book examines the presentation of the non-Christian world in two fifteenth- and sixteenth-century Italian romance/chivalric epics,  a very topical field in research. It will make an important contribution to a very active debate on the presentation of the ‘other’ and the Saracen and Muslim worlds in Italian literature.”


    Jane E. Everson, Professor, School of Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Author Information

    Jo Ann Cavallo is a professor in the Department of Italian at Columbia University.

  • Table of contents

    Acknowledgments

    Introduction

    Part One: Asia

    1. Angelica of Cathay

    2. Gradasso of Sericana

    3. Agricane of Tartary

    4. Mandricardo, Son of Agricane

    5. Marphisa, Eastern Queen

    Part Two: Out of Africa

    6. Agramante of Biserta (Tunisia)

    7. Rugiero (Atlas Mountains, northern Africa)

    8. Rodamonte of Sarza (Algeria)

    9. Saracen Spain

    Part Three: The Middle East

    10. Boiardo’s Noradino in Cyprus

    11. Egypt: from Damietta to Cairo

    12. Jerusalem

    13. Ariosto’s Norandino in Damascus

    Part Four: Back to Africa

    14. From Ethiopia to the Moon

    15. The Destruction of Biserta

    Part Five: From Cosmopolitanism to Isolationism

    16. Boiardo’s Brandimarte across the Continents

    17. Ariosto’s Rinaldo along the Po River

    Conclusion

    Notes

    Names and origins of fictional characters

    Works Cited

    Index

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