Arcangela Tarabotti: Antisatire: In Defense of Women, against Francesco Buoninsegni

The Other Voice in Early Modern Europe, The Toronto Series, Vol. 70

Arcangela Tarabotti: Antisatire: In Defense of Women, against Francesco Buoninsegni

Edited by Elissa B. Weaver
2019 | 978-0-86698-622-9 | Paperback 6 x 9 in
MRTS 564 | $41.95 |

OVEME v.70. Arcangela Tarabotti (1604–1652), Venetian nun and polemicist, was known for her protest against forced monachization and her advocacy for the education of women and their participation in public life. She responded to Francesco Buoninsegni’s Satire of the Vanities of Women (1638) with the Antisatire (1644), a defense of women’s fashions and a denunciation of men, but also a strong condemnation of men’s treatment of women and of the subordination of women in society. Both Buoninsegni and Tarabotti write with the exaggeration and absurd arguments typical of Menippean satire; they flaunt their knowledge of ancient and contemporary literature in a prose interspersed with poetry and replete with the astonishing Baroque conceits that delighted their contemporaries.

Edited and translated by Elissa B. Weaver


With this edition by Elissa Weaver, internationally acclaimed as a distinguished scholar of early modern Italian women’s writing, Arcangela Tarabotti’s lively, polemical Antisatire (1644) joins several other translations of her works in the Other Voice series. It is published alongside the satire that provoked it, a witty reprise of the traditional moralizing discourse on feminine vanity by the Sienese poet and academician Francesco Buonsinsegni. Weaver’s Introduction locates the dispute with Buoninsegni within Tarabotti’s trajectory as a writer, and traces the Antisatira’s complex reception history, and the circumstances of its composition. The editorial apparatus is excellent, and the translation of the two texts is fluent, clear, accurate, and historically sensitive.
—Virginia Cox
Department of Italian Studies, New York University