On the Importance of Being an Individual in Renaissance Italy: Men, Their Professions, and Their Beards

By Douglas Biow | Go to book overview

PREFACE

THIS BOOK REFLECTS ON THE IMPORTANCE OF THE NOTION OF THE INDIVIDUAL in the Italian Renaissance, with an “individual” understood as someone with a mysterious, inimitable quality, a signature style, and/or a particular, identifying mode of addressing the world. More specifically, it examines how the notion of the individual was important for a variety of men in the Italian Renaissance, both men who belonged to the elite and those who aspired to be part of it, as a way of understanding, characterizing, and representing themselves and others, both “real” and “fictional” others. At the same time, this book explores the individual in light of the new patronage systems, educational programs, and work opportunities that had come into place and in the context of an increased investment in professionalization, the changing status of artisans and artists, shifting attitudes about the ideology of work, technological advances, the collecting habits of people with significant disposable incomes, new dominant fashions among men, an increased concern for etiquette, and the eventual rise of court culture in the sixteenth century. Moreover, scholars, beginning with the cultural historian Jacob Burckhardt in his foundational essay The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy, have not—this book shows—always adequately appreciated how complex and sometimes deliberately mystifying the notion of the individual in the period actually was. Nor have they always sufficiently recognized how that notion permeated simultaneously so many different areas of expertise, from the visual arts to the medical arts to the intellectual arts of the humanists, and how it pervaded so many different visual and verbal forms, from works of imaginative literature to treatises to paintings to fashion.

The overriding concern of this book, then, has been not to resuscitate in any form or manner a Burckhardtian view of the Renaissance individual. Rather, it has been to reconsider how valuable the notion of the individual was for some men who lived and worked in Renaissance Italy and, at the same time, to reassess the value of thinking about the notion of the individual in the period generally. This notion, it is important to emphasize from the outset, has largely, if not at times completely, fallen out of favor when we talk about identities in the period. And it has come under serious attack over the past few decades. A

-ix-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
On the Importance of Being an Individual in Renaissance Italy: Men, Their Professions, and Their Beards
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 311

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.