Northwestern Events Calendar


Early Modern Colloquium Speaker - Emily Wilbourne

When: Thursday, January 24, 2019
5:15 PM - 6:30 PM  

Where: University Hall, 201, 1897 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: English Department   847.491.7294

Group: English Department

Department of Art History

Category: Lectures & Meetings


The Early Modern Colloquium presents Emily Wilbourne, Associate Professor of Musicology at Queens College and the Graduate Center at the City University of New York, on Thursday, January 24 at 5:15 pm in University Hall 201 (the Hagstrum Room). This event is co-sponsored by the Department of English and the Musicology program. Her paper is called “Little Black Giovanni’s Dream: The performance of buffoons, slaves, dwarves, and bad Christians at the Medici court.”

The poem “Sogno di Giovannino Moro” or “Little Black Giovanni's Dream” survives in a single manuscript copy, undated and unattributed in the Medicean archives in Florence. This paper provides a close reading of the text, arguing that the enslaved black chamber singer Gio: Buonaccorsi (fl. 1651-d.1674) was the author of the poem. The text itself, likely to have been performed to music, gives evidence of a close-knit community of dwarves, slaves, buffoons and infidels within the inner circles of the court and argues for a more sophisticated account of the multicultural and international presence of “Others” within the seventeenth-century Italian court.

The talk will be followed by a Q&A and a reception. Light refreshments will be served.

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