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Il formaggio e i vermi: Il cosmo di un mugnaio del '500

3.94  ·  Rating Details ·  2,468 Ratings  ·  149 Reviews
Gli studiosi di storia hanno da tempo appreso che la storia è storia degli uomini, non dei «grandi», e che quando è possibile arrivare fino alla realtà quotidiana, meglio si decifra il passato, fino a coglierne con senso di immediatezza i problemi, le connessioni con l'oggi, la storia. In questo libro, Carlo Ginz-burg ci dà l'analisi della visione del mondo di un mugnaio f ...more
Paperback, Piccola Biblioteca Einaudi. Storia #465, 196 pages
Published September 4th 2009 by Einaudi (first published 1976)
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Jan-Maat
Fantastic study based on trial records of a sixteenth century Italian miller charged with heresy. The book offers a glimpse into an alternative (and generally unheard from) world-view that is full of so much imagination on the part of the miller that it should put many a fiction writer to shame.

That really is its strength and virtue, to be a reminder that the masses of people that now we label as Lutheran, Catholic or Anabaptist were a mess of individuals. While the beliefs of the hierarchies ca
...more
Noce
Aug 18, 2011 Noce rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Non dite di conoscere l’Italia, se non siete mai andati a mangiare in trattoria.



Partiamo col dire che non è un ricettario a base di prodotti caseari, tramandato dai nostri avi.
Quindi abbandonate il grembiule e mettetevi comodi.
Ma non troppo comodi, scordatevi l’amaca e il mojito in mano. Piuttosto scrittoio e appunti, preceduti dalla visione di qualche vecchia cassetta di “Un giorno in pretura”.

Trattasi infatti degli atti realtivi a un processo giudiziario del ‘500.
Scordatevi però che riguardi
...more
Karen
Jul 25, 2011 Karen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Cheese and the Worms is a ground breaking exposé into the field of microhistory and remains a foundational work for historians today. Ginzberg used the story of Menocchio, a sixteenth century miller who was twice prosecuted and ultimately condemned by the inquisition for holding and preaching egregiously heretical beliefs. As a miller and a literate man, Menocchio had a greater exposure to people and ideas than the average peasant-farmer, and apparently also a keen intellect which he used to ...more
Rana
Apr 22, 2014 Rana rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: idiots
this guy goes on for 150+ pages about ALL the possible explanations for this random peasant thinking that the world was formed from chaos like the way cheese coagulates. then he's like the collective unconscious is an "unacceptable" explanation like wtf this whole book is dumb and this guy wasted his time writing it and the translators wasted their time translating it. it's literally written like "well the miller may have gotten his ideas from THIS SMALL, FAR OFF CHRISTIAN EXTREMIST GROUP becaus ...more
Jen
Jan 06, 2013 Jen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a medievalist, I run across this book all the time, which is funny considering it's not really a medieval book (it's more Renaissance/early modern). It's made a huge splash in The Study of Old Things, though, so I'm not surprised it finally showed up in a class of mine on the reading list.
So, the gist of the story (and it really does read like a story, which is kind of neat) is Ginzburg following the trials by the inquisition (no, not the one you didn't expect, another one) of a miller for be
...more
Elizabeth
Jan 18, 2010 Elizabeth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
This book is so hyped in academic circles, that it was perhaps setting itself up as a disappointment before I even cracked it open. I'm sure for the right type of history major (that is, one that's interested in actual events in history rather than their theoretical importance) this is a revelation. For me, it was more boring than I care to admit. I couldn't care about the miller Menocchio anymore than I care about any other random individual on the street. Sure, he was uncommonly literate, and ...more
Siria
This is a microhistory of a sixteenth century Italian miller, whose heretical beliefs brought him to the attention of the Inquisition. Ginzburg uses the records of his trial to examine his personal theology and cosmology, and to examine to what extent we can recover a pre-modern "popular culture." I thought it was a more sophisticated attempt at a microhistory than The Return of Martin Guerre; Ginzburg approaches his sources with more subtlety and with more awareness of the dangers of pre-concei ...more
Soobie's heartbroken
Questo libro è stata una sorpresa.

L'ho preso in mano perché avevo partecipato ad un incontro con il regista Alberto Fasulo e lui avevo parlato del suo prossimo progetto cinematografico, appunto un film sul Menocchio. Il nome mi era familiare perché, tutto sommato, vivo ad una quindicina di chilometri da Montereale; ma non avevo la minima idea di cosa avesse combinato per essere ricordato a cinquecento anni di distanza.

Fasulo ha cominciato il suo racconto citando un articolo di The New Yorker, qu
...more
Seward Park Branch Library, NYPL
This mirco-history concerns the life and times of one Domenico Scandella, a miller known as 'Menocchio', who was put on trial during the Inquisition for conceiving of and promulgating a blasphemous cosmos in a town of the north-eastern Italian state of Friuli. The central metaphor of his cosmic fantasy is 'the cheese and the worms', or, more to the point, the relationship between the cheese and its 'spontaneous generation' of worms.

Menocchio was a literate peasant (a rarity) so it's tempting to
...more
Celeste
Sep 25, 2007 Celeste rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, italy
Carlo Ginzburg looks at detailed records from the Roman Inquisition trial of a sixteenth century miller named Menocchio whose heresies include the rejection of the divinity of Christ, the rejection of the idea of Virgin Birth, and an interesting cosmogony in which in the beginning all was chaos out of which emerged a mass "just as cheese is made out of milk--and worms appeared in it, and these were the angels, and among that number of angels there was also God, he too having been created out of ...more
Stefan
Sep 09, 2015 Stefan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've never had the pleasure of reading about such a well-documented life of any regular person that had lived before the 1800s before, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There is something beautifully egalitarian about the very idea of such an approach, but what makes the book truly fascinating is Ginzburg's ability to paint an image of the wider early Modern peasant society based on this story of a single person. The period he works with is particularly apt for such explorations of individuals, speci ...more
Josh
May 08, 2012 Josh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Facinating book, but Ginzburg over-reaches. There are many reasons why Menocchio may believe what he seems to believe. He may not have actually read the books he says he did. He may not have understood what he was reading very well due to limited literacy or not being able to read the dialect his books were in. All these are more likely than Menocchio tapping into a primeval Indo-European peasant tradition of pantheism untouched by Roman or Christian religion. A classic but ultimately a failed e ...more
Douglas Dalrymple
This is one of those books that gets talked up by history professors, etc, but also comes in for some criticism of the academic sort that I just don’t care about. I liked it all right. The subject matter – and the subject himself (Domenico Scandella, a miller who was burned at the stake as a heretic in the 16th century) is fascinating. But there’s a relative dearth of information on the trial and the man, and Ginzburg gets to repeating himself a lot. For a more compelling historical biography of ...more
Charlie Hersh
What an incredible book! Really one of the best books I've read in grad school so far, or at least the one I've had the most enthusiastic response to. The meta-argument of this book -- that an unremarkable individual can be studied as a microcosm of the community they lived in -- is central to my job and the museum education program that I run. So frankly it was very inspiring to read such a groundbreaking model!
Cynthia
I absolutely love the idea of giving voice to the voiceless, illuminating peasant culture, and "extend[ing] the historic concept of the 'individual' in the direction of the lower classes." But the subject that Ginzburg chose, the singular Mennochio, really doesn't have enough evidence about his life to back up all this extrapolation. That makes it all just seem like tenuous speculation. Bummer.
Alex
Jun 12, 2009 Alex rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Replace the theology department with 'Cheese and Worms' studies.
Michael Quinn
Feb 25, 2012 Michael Quinn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Carlo Ginzburg dives into a different kind of history than the one we may be used to in his 1976 book The Cheese and the Worms. Ginzburg uses various sources and trial records of a man known as Menocchio, to show a mentality different from the mainstream popular mentality of others like him at his time. What Ginzburg uncovers through his discovery is a well read and incredibly interesting man who worked as a miller in the popular culture of Italy in the 16th century, and resisted the ideas of t ...more
Martin Mostek
Feb 04, 2017 Martin Mostek rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Zřejmě nejslavnější Ginzburgovu studii jsem si shodou okolností přečetl až nějaký čas po jeho šířeji založených Benandantech a rozmáchlém a působivém Nočním příběhu. Sýr a červi jsou naproti tomu mikrohistorickou studií usilující o rozeznání dobové, a tradiční, orální lidové kultury v inkvizičních aktech bouřliváckého, paličatého a částečně vzdělaného furlandského mlynáře Domenica Scandelly, zvaného Menocchio. Ginzburg propátrává nakolik lze heterodoxní a zjevně pevně a dlouho zastávaná přesvědč ...more
Mark Bowles
Aug 30, 2014 Mark Bowles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Blind Alley?: The books meanings were distorted by Menocchio. His oral culture was the filter for all of his reading
* Temple of the Virgins: Example of a detail in a book becoming the central issue for Menocchio
* Funeral of the Madonna: Again Menocchio overemphasizes the dishonor of Mary and misinterprets the story
* The Father of Christ: Menocchio focuses of Joseph being the father of Christ.
* Judgment Day: Menocchio believes that mans relationship to man is more important than his relationship
...more
Luciana Darce
Jul 03, 2014 Luciana Darce rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
E começamos mais um mês e mais um tema do Desafio Literário 2011. Os livros que escolhi dessa vez passam todos pelo mesmo tema e, claro, não se trata de uma coincidência: investigações históricas.

Iniciamos então com o pé direito, com o absolutamente delicioso O Queijo e os Vermes de Carlo Ginzburg. Esse livro está na minha lista de leituras desde a época do colégio, continuou lá durante a faculdade e esperou ainda mais um pouco até que um belo dia chega um pacote da Régis com ele no meio. Ia com
...more
Sarah
Jan 30, 2017 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites-4
Fantastic and early example of a microhistory. Slightly dense but reads like one narrative; frequent chapter breaks help focus the reader. Interesting way of drawing conclusions about the mingling of "higher" and "lower" cultures by extrapolating from Menocchio's case.Would say the introductions/prefaces are a must read before starting the actual text. Familiarity with mid sixteenth century circulation/printing of books as well as the Inquisition and heretics is a good thing to have in mind duri ...more
Vincent
Jan 10, 2015 Vincent rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, history
This is a book that I would recommend to both historians and regular readers; it is short (the written parts are only about 128 pages, with many notes in the back for more academically-inclined readers), and the content is very interesting and easy to read. There are a few minor problems that keep me from giving it five stars, which I will list at the last paragraph of this review.

The Cheese and the Worms is a surprisingly interesting book that contains multiple important points:

First of all, th
...more
Andrew Fairweather
This mirco-history concerns the life and times of one Domenico Scandella, a miller known as 'Menocchio', who was put on trial during the Inquisition for conceiving of and promulgating a blasphemous cosmos in a town of the north-eastern Italian state of Friuli. The central metaphor of his cosmic fantasy is 'the cheese and the worms', or, more to the point, the relationship between the cheese and its 'spontaneous generation' of worms.

Menocchio was a literate peasant (a rarity) so it's tempting to
...more
Shiba Otimista
FINALMENTE

3.5 estrelas na real

Eu nunca fui com a cara da escrita do Ginzburg e esse livro só ajudou a reforçar: achei a escrita dele chata, enfadonha, entediante e repetitiva, além de sem foco firme e sem conclusão histórica forte (calma, vou explicar).

É o seguinte: Ginzburg pegou o processo contra o Menocchio (o moleiro) e meio que fez uma "engenharia reversa" daquelas ideias, baseando-se em alguns dados de grupos hereges próximos ou não, em livros que Menocchio diz ter lido e que pode talvez t
...more
Leo Ernst
Dec 20, 2016 Leo Ernst rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A historia do moleiro Menocchio é surpreendente - um simples moleiro que tinha o costume de ler e possuia um pensamento que divergia dos seus contemporaneos. O autor descreve com minucia os processos do moleiro Domenico Scandella, o contexto histórico naquela região e na Europa.
Plucino
Jun 26, 2012 Plucino rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, religion
L'autore non fa sconti: è un libro di storia "duro e puro", che consiglio di leggere alla scrivania o in poltrona con taccuino e matita, piuttosto che a letto: non è una passeggiata! Per poter capire gli estratti dei testi, consiglio inoltre un'infarinatura scolastica di latino e una certa flessibilità nel leggere un italiano decisamente diverso dal nostro.
Il valore del libro per il sottoscritto: poter entrare nel dettaglio nella storia di un singolo individuo che non fu re, principe, vescovo o
...more
Charlie
Nov 20, 2016 Charlie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book, emblematic of the sub-genre of microhistory, is actually two stories simultaneously playing out on two levels. On the most obvious level, it follows the life and troubles of an early-modern Italian miller, Menocchio. Menocchio spent most of his life as both an idiosyncratic heretic and a well-respected member of his community. He came up against the Roman Inquisition multiple times, resulting in several imprisonments and eventually his execution.

The second level of this book is Ginzb
...more
Frank Stein
Jan 12, 2011 Frank Stein rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

An interesting look at the heresy trial of an unknown Italian miller named Menocchio, who had his own very distinctive ideas about the world and God that landed him in trouble with the Church.

Menocchio believed that the world was originally a mass of "chaos" which slowly coagulated and out of which God and the angels came "like worms from cheese." In his view, God became almost a pantheistic part of the world that he created, inhabiting every tree, person, rock, and human. "We are all God," Men
...more
Autumn
Though not my typical pick, this book (read for my Honors class) demonstrates the immense hypocrisy of the Catholic Church during the Baroque Period. As a miller in an isolated village in Italy (Montereale), a literate peasant explores the elements of Christianity with an unwittingly pantheistic bend. His conclusions range from being considered Lutheran, Anabaptist, atheist, Muslim, pantheist, and pagan. Despite his anomalous approach to religion his village finds him an amiable personality, fai ...more
Victoria
Again, liked this far less on re-read. Ginzburg argues that an "ancient peasant culture" existed in pre-modern Europe, in tandem with and in contradiction to the wider Christian culture, which was often simply overlaid onto an as-yet un-Christian society, even up to 1600. He argues that it is possible to get at artefacts of this peasant culture through the trial of Domenico Scandella, contrasting what he said about the works he owned and read with what we know them to contain -- and so thereby d ...more
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Born in 1939, he is the son of of Italian-Ukranian translator Leone Ginzburg and Italian writer Natalia Ginzburg. Historian whose fields of interest range from the Italian Renaissance to early modern European History, with contributions in art history, literary studies, popular cultural beliefs, and the theory of historiography.
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“We can readily see the function of nature, how it reconciles discordant things in such a fashion that it reduces all the differences to unity and combines them into one body and one substance: and also it combines them in plants and in seeds, and by the joining of male and female engenders beings according to the natural course.' —Fioretto della Bibbia 0 likes
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