Courts, Patrons and Poets. The Renaissance in Europe - A Cultural Enquiry
David Mateer (éd.)
New Haven and London : Yale University Press, 2000. xi + 383 pp. Illustrations, figures, maps, notes, index. $45.00 (cloth), ISBN 978-0-300-08225-8
The Open University’s new course, "The Renaissance in Europe : A Cultural Enquiry," introduces undergraduates to the latest research on the cultural history of the Renaissance and Reformation and to the methods of cultural history. In both these tasks it succeeds admirably. The textbooks and supplementary readings provide a nuanced approach to contemporary research areas and problems in Renaissance culture. As the backbone of a distance-learning course, the textbooks combine straightforward expository passages—the equivalent of lectures—with exercises that ask students to read selected primary and secondary sources and answer specific questions about them, questions that are then discussed in the textbook. The complete package of five books is an up-to-date course that could be used on its own (with the eight additional set texts and several recordings of Renaissance music) by an ambitious and disciplined student, or mined by teachers of Renaissance studies for ideas and exercises to use in their own courses...