Waning of the Middle Ages
Johan H. Huizinga, Waning of the Middle Ages
Penguin Books Ltd | 1990 | ISBN: 0140137025, 0140203079, 0141390611, 0713152303, 0385092881, 0140550550 | 352 pages | File type: PDF | 8 mb
ummary: Fills a space between academics and interested others
I checked this book out of the library many times as an undergraduate. I always felt that it belonged to me and resented having to return it! So I am finally going to buy it.
Huizinga has a way of writing that emphasizes a shared humanity across time. I happen to be a graduate student doing a lot of work in Medieval Studies, but this beautiful and touchingly melancholic book is easily readable for anyone, refreshingly free of the gunk of critical theory. There is no Jacques Lacan in this book, I promise!
Seriously, though, if you were curious enough to read the reviews, I encourage you to buy it. Please note that it confines itself to a very particular geographic area northernmost France, Belgium, and Holland in the 14th, 15th, and early 16th Centuries.
Summary: reviewing a classic
You have asked me to review a classic. You might as well have asked me to review the bible or Shakespeare's plays. I purchased this book because I was unable to locate the volume that I keep in my personal library.I needed it as a reference for a paper on Thomas Cole - Working in the Shadows of the Renaissance that I will be presenting in Florence, Italy in May. I first read this book in 1945, when it was assigned as a part of a course in the Renaissance and Reformation that I took while I was an undergraduate at Princeton. Huizinga's The Waning of the Middle Ages replaces the idea that the Middle Ages ended with a door slam, with evidence that its ending was gradual and traceable. The book is a necessary component in the library of every scholar of history. See also Huizinga Homo Ludens.
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