Read transcript of Ep 9: Renaissance

Alternatively, follow this link to hear the episode & read the show notes. Transcription by Amy Carpenter. [A woman sings passionately in Italian, backed by a Renaissance orchestra. Continues in background] Ian McDonald: Prosperina, the Queen of Hades, is swayed by the singing of Orpheus and begs Hades to return his wife, in Monteverdi’s 1607 opera.… more

VegHist Ep 9: Renaissance. Descartes, Montaigne, Gassendi, and the “sparing diet”

Ancient philosophers inspire Renaissance thinkers to challenge the old hierarchy of man over beast. Episode 9: Renaissance Old medieval certainties are cracking under the combined assault of new sciences and rediscovered classics. It’s an age when “natural philosophers” combine scientific discovery with philosophical treatises, and when their Republic of Letters transcends political boundaries in the name of free thought. It’s the age of Descartes, whose mechanical philosophy dismisses animals as “automatons”. But rivals like Gassendi suggest that animals have more in common with humans than he thinks. Ian traces the trail from Paris to the Mughal Court and back to the medical schools of the Enlightenment. He discovers the forgotten story of how Christian mythology, early anatomy, classical thinkers, and Indian medicine came together in respected medical schools that taught students to prescribe a vegetable diet. Play or download (61MB MP3 44min) (via iTunes) or read transcript.… more