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Nov. 4, 2009

Vol. 110, No. 4

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Dissimulation and the Culture of Secrecy in Early Modern Europe

By Jon R. Snyder ’76
Posted on November 3, 2009


(University of California Press) The art of dissimulation, practiced widely in early modern Europe, allowed princes, aristocrats, and commoners alike to disguise or silence their most intimate thoughts and emotions. On both a personal and a political level, dissimulation was critical for those who could not risk revealing their inner lives. Snyder’s exploration of 16th- and 17th-century attitudes toward dissimulation includes canonical and lesser-known works from across Europe (with a special focus on Italy), as he probes the two-hundred-year controversy surrounding this practice. Snyder is professor of Italian studies and comparative literature at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

 
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