The Cheese and the Worms is an incisive study of popular culture in the sixteenth Carlo Ginzburg uses the trial records to illustrate the religious and social. The Cheese and the Worms: the Cosmos of a 16th-Century Miller by Carlo Ginzburg, translated by John Tedeschi and Anne Tedeschi. Celebrated historian Carlo Ginzburg uncovers the past by telling the stories of the marginalized, the forgotten, and the suppressed. His most.

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He was asked to name accomplices. Historian whose fields of interest range from the Italian Renaissance to early modern European History, with contributions in art history, literary studies, popular cultural beliefs, and the theory of historiography.

Sure, he was uncommonly literate, and yes it was somewhat interesting to see how his reading manifested itself into his belief system thus justifying fears that when peasants get a hold of books they are going to come to their own conclusions regarding their contents, rather than those the clergy so dogmatically thrust upon them. Though such a simple explanation that would provide a neat sense of closure on the subject is tempting to adopt, one can’t help but notice the empirical make-up of his metaphors.

This mirco-history concerns the life and times of one Domenico Scandella, a miller known as ‘Menocchio’, who was put on trial during the Inquisition for conceiving of and promulgating a blasphemous cosmos in a town of the north-eastern Italian state of Friuli. Poor Menocchio was a victim of being to smart for his own good.

Ginzburg’s discovery of Menocchio is a dazzling entry into the historical world of popular culture. An Italian translation of the 14th-century Travels of Sir John Mandeville revealed to him the existence of the quite different civilisations and religions of Islam, India and China.

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Omg spoiler alert, I know. He writes a letter to the judges to ask for his forgiveness. The central metaphor of his cosmic fantasy is ‘the cheese and the worms’, or, more to the point, the relationship between the cheese and its ‘spontaneous generation’ of worms.

Cheese served to illustrate some sort of ‘chaos’, or productive nature prior to divine inspiration Withoutabox Submit to Film Festivals. The meta-argument of this book — that an unremarkable individual can be studied as a microcosm of the community they lived in — is central to my job and the museum education program that I run. This book, emblematic of the sub-genre of microhistory, is actually two stories simultaneously playing out on two levels. In Montaillou Le Roy Ladurie utilised one lucky cache of evidence.


The tale Ginzberg weaves has tantalizing possibilities, but it suffers from two general flaws. In his trial testimony he made references to more than a dozen books, including the Bible, Boccaccio’s DecameronMandeville’s Travelsand a “mysterious” book that may have been the Koran.

After a few years he was released from prison, but he couldn’t stop talking, and ultimately the cardinal and pope put their red slippers down and insisted he be burned at the stake, pronto. Ginzburg’s discovery of Menocchio is a dazzling entry into the historical world of popular culture. The Cheese and the Worms: Carlo Ginzburg with a new preface translated by John and Anne C. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. For a common miller, Menocchio was surprisingly literate.

The Cheese and the Worms

Ginzberg used the story of Menocchio, a sixteenth century miller who caelo twice prosecuted and ultimately condemned by the inquisition for holding and preaching egregiously heretical beliefs. We see victory of written culture over oral culture as Menocchio uses text to support his convictions. Furthermore, making 62 calro out of pages seems to be little more than the classic and transparent undergraduate technique to fill space.

In his trial testimony he made references to more than a dozen books, including the Bible, Boccaccio’s Decameron, Mandeville’s Travels, and a “mysterious” book that may have been the Koran. No justification ccheese or should be sought for torture, for the wracking of Menocchio and countless others on the ropes of We should not let the long tradition of smearing practicing Catholics as the brainwashed servants of a threatening foreign power—in which sensationalist and hyperbolic depictions of the Roman Inquisition play ccarlo part—from identifying the Catholic Church of the late sixteenth century for what it was: Oct 02, Barbara Hansen rated it liked it Shelves: More focus on the ideology of the character than the character himself.

The Cheese and the Worms: The Cosmos of a Sixteenth-Century Miller

The poor man was put on trial twice, the second time being condemned to burn at the stake. Ginzburg in his wanderings through the labyrinthine mind of the miller of the Friuli will take leave of this strange and quirky old man with genuine regret.


This is an insightful book for all of us who assume European peasants were illiterate, uneducated, non-thinking folk.

Because of the first, a simple miller had dared to think of speaking outof voicing his own opinions about the Church and the world. A short historical work attempts to look into the cosmos of a 16th-century miller in the north of Italy.

Thanks to the second, words were at his disposal to express the obscure, inarticulate vision of the world that fermented within him. From Mandeville, Menocchio extracted the view that carli were good men in all religions: East Dane Designer Men’s Fashion.

Open Preview See a Problem? He went so far as to cheess that Jesus was born of man and Mary was not a virgin, that the Pope had no power given to him from God but simply exemplified the qualities of a good manand that Christ had not died to “redeem humanity”.

It is a morality rather than a religion.

Menocchio rejected original sin, believed that Christ was a man. God is nothing else than a little breath Though not my typical pick, this book read for my Honors class demonstrates the immense hypocrisy of the Catholic Church during the Baroque Period.

His philosophical teachings earned him the title of a heresiarch during the Inquisition and he was eventually burned at the stake inat the age of 67, on orders of Pope Clement VIII. Il Menocchio andava a Venezia a procurarseli e li leggeva attentamente e ci rimuginava sopra.

I liked it all right. I’ve never had the pleasure of reading about such a well-documented life of any regular person that had lived before the s before, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

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The Cheese and the Worms – Wikipedia

Ginzburg’s best explanation posits a peasant oral culture, pre-Christian and never entirely eliminated during the Middle Czrlo, catalyzed by Menocchio’s reading and brought to light by the Counter Reformation’s keen nose for heterodoxy. Set up a giveaway. Ginzburg in his wanderings through the labyrinthine mind of the miller of the Friuli will take leave of this strange and quirky old man with genuine regret.

The Cosmos of a Sixteenth-Century Miller.