David Lummus (Stanford) – “Boccaccio and Petrarch on Poetry: Genealogy of the Pagan Gods and Invectives against the Physician”
Thursday April 7 at 4:30pm in Special Collections, Hesburgh Libraries
In their respective defenses of poetry, Boccaccio and Petrarch not only defend their poetics, they also establish a civic and intellectual role for the poet as bearer of a unique form of knowledge. In this paper, I argue that Boccaccio engages with and subtly undermines Petrarch’s poetics by reversing the social role that Petrarch envisages for the poet. I focus on the relationship between the Genealogy of the Pagan Gods and the Invectives against the Physician, but I also bring into discussion other works of the two authors, such as Boccaccio’s Decameron and Life of Dante and Petrarch’s Familiar Letters and On the Solitary Life.
Originally published at italianstudies.nd.edu.