Date of this Version
Joan DeJean's recent book, The Reinvention of Obscenity, brings front and center issues of filth and impiety as they relate to cultural norms. DeJean's assertion that "Paris was the center for the production of dirty books and dirty pictures” in the Early Modern period underscores the extent to which obscene literature becomes a cultural referent, either open or clandestine. While her focus is on obscenity as it relates to the neo- Classical era, DeJean emphasizes that the Baroque period also contributed to the "reinvention" of smut that characterized a distinct element of literary and artistic production during the seventeenth century. She concentrates on Théophile de Viau, and mentions works such as the Le Cabinet satyrique (1618), and the Le Parnasse des poètes satyriques (1622). These volumes, containing bawdy offerings from the likes of Théophile (1590-1626). Mathurin Régnier (1573-1613), and Guillaume Colletet (1588-1641) among others, cotitribute to what Louis Perceau terms "la magnifique floraison satyrique" (p. 4) of the libertine era.