Entrails and digestion in the eighteenth century
in Bellies, bowels and entrails in the eighteenth century
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This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book explores the metaphorical and symbolic connections between the entrails of the body and the bowels of the city or the labyrinthine tunnels of the mine. It uncovers a seemingly paradoxical scatological pleasure in eighteenth-century drama. The book focuses on Paris to analyse the fundamental connection between the bowels of city and the entrails of the body. It also focuses on drawings, engravings and caricatures which used the bowels, viscera and entrails to articulate political protest, Revolutionary tensions and subversion through scatological aesthetics, or to expose those invisible organs. The book explores human digestion and explains the ways in which the role of the stomach and of the workings of the inner body became pivotal to understanding larger patterns of interrelationship between the organs.


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