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Dig Deeper: Prepare for Boccaccio Talk by Exploring Where Soul Meets Body

Waterhouse painting of The Decameron

James Kriesel, PhD, will be delivering a talk on 11/29 in Room 205 at 4 p.m. on his recently published book Boccaccio’s Corpus. Before attending today’s talk, here are five things you need to know about Italian author Giovanni Boccaccio:

  • Bubonic Backdrop. Boccaccio lived during the times of the Black Plague, and his book The Decameron takes place with the characters escaping the disease’s reach (Aers 185).
  • Take and Read. Unlike other predecessors who wrote in Latin that could only be read by the highly educated, Boccaccio wrote in Florentine vernacular, a language that could be understood by common people (Kriesel).
  • Echoes of Inspiration. The Decameron has influenced works across the ages, from Shakespeare to Lord Tennyson to modern film and television.
  • Real Talk. Boccaccio’s work included erotic tales featuring women, countering contentions of the time, displaying both hints of realism as well as contemporary ideas about gender and theology (Kriesel).
  • Boccaccio by Book, Journal, or Website. Falvey Library’s collection contains dozens of books with translations and analysis of The Decameron, and library patrons can access hundreds of online scholarly articles through the library’s website.

The event is co-sponsored by Falvey Memorial Library and Romance Languages and Literatures, and is free and open to the public.

Shawn Proctor

Shawn Proctor is Communication and Marketing Program Manager at Falvey Memorial Library.


Works Cited

Aers, David. “Studies in the Age Of Chaucer.” Literary Practice and Social Change in Britain, 1380–1530, edited by Lee Patterson, 1910.

Kriesel, James C. “Boccaccio and the Early Modern Reception of Tragedy.” Renaissance Quarterly, Volume 69, Issue 2, Summer 2016, pp. 415-448.



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Last Modified: November 20, 2019

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