The Cheese and the Worms: The Cosmos of a Sixteenth-Century Miller / The Great Cat Massacre and Other Episodes in French Cultural History

書刊名 Title1. The Cheese and the Worms: The Cosmos of a Sixteenth-Century Miller. (tr. John and Anne Tedeschi). London and Henley: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1980.
2.The Great Cat Massacre and Other Episodes in French Cultural History. New York: Vintage Books, 1985.
作者 Author1. Ginzburg, Carlo. 
2. Darnton, Robert
出版社 PublisherSee above
出版年 YearSee above
語言 LanguageEnglish
(10 / 13)
1. 9788806153779 
2. 9780456012749
Bibliography Reference (STC, Duff, GW . . .)
來源網址 Web Link1.
評論者 ReviewerWang, I-Chun
撰寫日期 DateJuly 1, 2015

Ø 書評 Review (中英文不限 Chinese or English) 

“Microhistory” as a methodology for historical studies was brought up by Georg G. Iggers in the 1970s; in his book Historiography in the Twentieth Century, he suggests a new perspective, the concrete reality of the small-scale life” to understand human history. The books by Carlo Ginzburg, Charles Joyner and Robert Darnton are among the most significant contributions to the history of cultural studies. In Ginzburg’s The Cheece and the Worms, for example, Ginzburg tries to reconstruct the life of a sixteenth-century peasant miller Domenico Scandella (also known as Menocchio, 1532–1599) who was brought to trial in the Inquisition. Millers as targets of heresies was not uncommon; as Ginzburg reveals that the mills was a place of social relations and a platform to share information. Through the eyes of the miller, aspects of life in Montereale of the Venetian Republic are revealed, which include heresies, tolerance, quality of life as well as the intellectual life found in peasant culture. Menocchio was born in 1530. He was said to be able to read books that held secrets. He commented upon the Trinity and cosmic knowledge he held to be true, and he was able to argue with Inquisition officers that “Chaos is given and God and cosmos are born together”. He was banished and eventually burned at the stake for violating “orthodox” views of his time. As Edward Muir said that microhistory may help us find the lost peoples, Ginzburg, by means of representing the miller, retells not only the dominant culture but also class struggle and the expectation of religious tolerance in the sixteenth century Italy.
When Ginzburg approaches religious motifs, Joyner chooses to approach slaves’ life from the perspective of a folklorist, ethno-musician and historian. As Joyner says, Southern folklife in the US involves “everything southerners do, think, hope and fear,” the book Shared Traditions looks into aspects of cultural interactions through individuals, such as John Brown, a white American abolitionist, the life on the plantations and immigrants to the south. Robert Darnton, however, does his micro-historical study on a very special case, the massacre of cats during the late 1730s in Paris. This study, by tracing the slaughters of cats by a group of suffering printing apprentices, reveals class tension and animosity in the relationship between the workers and masters in the eighteenth century France. This event surely, foreshadows the outbreak of the French Revolution.