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Michigan State University


This is a guide to researching the Renaissance/Early Modern Period, in the West, especially material culture.


Greenwood Press Daily Life through History Series is a series of nearly 70 books published recently on aspects of daily life in various countries and cultures in the past. To find these books do a title search in the online catalog using this title. There are books in this series on Renaissance Italy, Elizabethan England, Stuart England, colonial New England, the old colonial frontier, the age of sail, civilians in wartime, Native Americans, cooking in Europe 1250-1650, cooking in America 1590-1840, science and technology in colonial America, and more.  In addition, these:

History of the European Family HQ 611 .A245 2001 Main

v. 1: Family Life in Early Modern Times (1500-1789)

History of Private Life, Vol. 3 Passions of the Renaissance HN 8 .H5713 1987 v. 3 Main

Covers writing, communal and private devotion, privacy, intimacy, civility, taste, children, public and private, friends and neighbors, families.

History and Material Culture: a Student's Guide to Approaching Alternative Sources Main GN 406 .H58 2009

Cambridge Cultural History of Britain, NX 543 .C36 1992 v. 3-4 Fine Arts-Art

v. 3 covers the 16th century; v. 4 covers the 17th century. 16th C volume: Renaissance and Reformation, architecture, literature and drama, music, gardens and parks, painting and imagery, crafts and decorative arts. Bibliography at end on these topics and reference to biographies of literary authors, musicians, artists. 17th C. volume: 17th C. history, the Bible, architecture, masques and pageants, literature and drama, London, Music, painting, sculpture, decorative and applied arts. Bibliography at the end on these topics and references to biographies of literary authors, musicians, artists.

Civilization and Capitalism, 15th – 18th Century. HC 45 .B713 1992 v. 1-3 Main

v. 1: Structures of Everyday Life: population, food and drink, houses, clothes and fashion, spread of technology, money, towns and cities. V. 2: Wheels of Commerce: trade and exchange, markets and the economy, production at home and away, society. V. 3: Perspective of the World: world economy, economies and national markets of various European countries, trade, the Americas, Africa, Russia, Turkish Empire, Far East, Industrial Revolution

New Oxford History of Music, vols. 4-6 ML 160 .N44 Fine Arts-Music

v. 4: Age of Humanism 1540-1630: French chanson, madrigals, secular song, solos and cantatas, Latin church music, Protestant church music, instrumental music, instruments and musical notation, music and drama, early opera. V. 5: Opera and Church Music 1630-1750: in the various European countries and Great Britain. V. 6: Concert Music 1630-1750: ode, oratorio, solos, duets, instrumental music for solo instruments, ensembles, chambers, and orchestras, keyboard music for piano, harpsichord, organ.

How to Do It, Guides to Good Living for Renaissance Italians HQ 629 .B45 1999 Main

Readers, conception, pregnancy and childbirth, raising your child, adolescence, marital relations.

Didactic Literature in England 1500-1800 PR 408 .D49 D53 2003 Main

Readers, the Bible, learning music, conversation, French, gardening, colonial representation in grammars, cosmetics and the plague, instructions for buying and selling

Chaste, Silent, and Obedient, English Books for Women 1475-1640 PR 429 .W64 H8 Main

Emerging female literature, practical guidebooks, recreational literature, devotional books, woman: innately good or bad?

Cambridge History of the Book in Britain Z 8 .G7 C36 1998 Main

A series in the making. V. 4 covers 1557-1695

Blackwell Reference Online see the link at the bottom of this page.

Historia de Espana DP 66 .M35 v. 1-17 Main

Hearth and Home: a History of Material Culture GT 76 .P76 1989 Main

History of Design: Decorative Arts and Material Culture 1400-2000 Fine Arts NK 600 f.H57 2013 (the f means "folio," oversized book.  These are shelved separately in the Fine Arts Library, 4th floor West Wing)

Material Culture in Europe and China 1400-1800: the Rise of Consumerism HC 240.9 .C6 A38 1997

Women and Material Culture 1660-1830 HQ 1587 .W627 2007 Main

Living and Working in Seventeenth-Century England: an Encyclopedia of Drawings and Descriptions from Randal Holme's Original Manuscripts for the Academy of Armory (1688) DMC, 4th floor west wing DA 485 .L58 2000 Disc

Handbook of Material Culture Main GN 406 .H36 2006 Main

Material Culture Reader Main GN 406 .M3493 2002 Main

Social Life of Things: Commodities in Cultural Perspective Main GN 450 .S63 1986 Main and GN 450 .C66 2005 Main

Subject and Object in Renaissance Culture Main CB 361 .R34 1996 Main

Civilizing Process Main CB 83 .E413 1978 v. 2; 1978b v. 1; 1994 Main

Renaissance Culture and the Everyday Main  DA 320 .R49 1999 Main

Critique of Everyday Life Main BD 431 .L36513 1991 v. 1-3 Main

Practice of Everyday Life HN 8 .C4313 1998 Main

Daily Life during the Reformation

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