Yael Rice: Alimentation, Materiality, and the Ethical Self in an Illustrated Recipe Book from Central India, circa-1500
We invite you to join the Department of Art History at the University of Chicago for this upcoming lecture as part of the 2022-23 Smart Lecture series. The lecture is Thursday, April 13 at 5:00pm CT with a Q&A session and reception to follow. This event will take place in CWAC 157 with a simultaneous live stream over zoom. More information to come.
Focusing on the Ni‘matnāma (Book of delights), a unique illustrated recipe book created around 1500 for the Khalji sultans of Malwa in west-central India, this talk addresses the intersection of food and manuscript cultures in the production of the ethical male subject. It contributes to recent debates about globality and globalization by considering how the Ni‘matnāma maps, embodies and consumes a very particular kind of world. At the heart of this world, the manuscript suggests, are the sultans, who harmonize the kingdom and the cosmos through their sensorial mastery of distant and near forms—from humor-balancing substances like ambergris and cloves to enslaved women’s bodies.
Yael Rice is an associate professor of art history and Asian languages and civilizations at Amherst College. She specializes in the art and architecture of South Asia, Central Asia, and Iran, with a particular focus on manuscripts and other portable arts of the fifteenth through eighteenth centuries. She is the author of the forthcoming The Brush of Insight: Artists and Agency at the Mughal Court (University of Washington Press, 2023).
Presented by the Department of Art History as part of the 2022/23 Smart Lecture series supported by the Smart Family Foundation.