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Italian renaissance writing

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Throughout the class, we have considered the value of various types of primary source texts, as well as their potential limitations. Read this week’s excerpts from Vasari’s Lives and Ascanio Condivi’s The Life of Michelangelo, paying close attention to the differences in their content and tone. These two texts will be the basis for a 350 to 400-word Wiki sssay.

Begin your essay by briefly comparing the similarities and differences in tone and content that you noticed in both texts. How does Vasari’s Life of Michelangelo fit within the larger arc of his project, which has been our textbook this semester? How do Condivi and Vasari each establish their authority on the subject of Michelangelo’s life and work?

Then, focus on Condivi’s account. Discuss the ways that Condivi’s relationship to Michelangelo shaped his writing, and consider what benefits we–as modern scholars–can draw from this highly personal and idiosyncratic source. Finally, choose a particular anecdote, interaction or artwork from Condivi’s account that either illuminated new aspects of Michelangelo’s character and/or art, or made you think differently about the artist and his expansive and multi-medial body of work.

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