What Are You Reading?
Isidro J. Rivera, University of Kansas
The Task of the Cleric: Cartography, Translation, and Economics in Thirteenth-century Iberia by Simone Pinet. University of Toronto Press, 2016.
I have just finished reading Simone Pinet’s book on the Libro de Alexandre and clerical culture (mester de clerecía). Pinet moves into new territory to explore this often neglected, thirteenth-century text. Along the way she talks eloquently and critically about maps, translation, coinage, and political landscapes. With this innovative critical framework, she offers a new interpretative paradigm for understanding the excitement of the Alexandre and other thirteenth-century texts. Her work teaches us new ways to read and provides an array of analytical tools that force us to reassess the cleric’s artistry. A definite stimulus for new research and discussion in our field.