Cooking pots, tableware, and the changing sounds of sociability in Italy, 1300–1700
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-09, 21:36 authored by Flora DennisFlora Dennis
This article considers how the sounds produced by the preparation and consumption of meals in Italy changed between around 1300 and 1700. It argues that by focusing on sound, and by using ecological approaches, we can rediscover obscured connections between different categories of material objects. By examining material and textual evidence for three categories of objects associated with cooking and dining – metalwork, ceramics, and glass – the article traces changes in the material cultures of kitchen and table, and the clear impact these changes had on domestic soundscapes. It considers these sound-producing objects as agents of social interaction, exploring the social relationships they constructed, and the role sound played in those relationships. The article then focuses on the practices of cooking and dining, and the way they shaped the sound of objects. Finally, the article situates objects and social practices within the spatial context of the home, tracing an increasing impetus to manage and control specific types of sound in relation to gender. In the discourse on hospitality, noise came to signify a badly-managed, and therefore morally dubious, household, while silence testified to decorous and authoritative domestic management.
- Accepted version
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Department affiliated with
- Art History Publications
Full text available