James O. Ward chronicles the popularity of the Greek romances in early
modern Italy. When they were as obviously libidinous as Daphnis and Chloe, they
were read as cautionary tales. "The Greek Novel in the Italian Renaissance: On the
Margins of the Canon,"
convention, December 1992.
Gordon Braden's phrase; see "Love and Fame: The Petrarchan Career," in
Pra8matism's Freud, ed. Joseph H. Smith and William Kerrigan (Baltimore: Johns
Hopkins University Press, 1986), p. 128.
3. In some ways the physical purity of Daphnis and Chloe-lovers whose sex-
uality is thwarted until marriage-is a precursor of the troubadour asa8 or test of
Love. The would-be lover is allowed to gaze on the naked lady and even touch her
but may not consummate his desire. "In the asa8, passion was born, exalted, and
tested, and it usually ended before the lovers reached sexual climax." See Rene
Nelli, "Love's Reward," trans. Alyson Waters, in Zone: Fra8ments for a History of
the Human Body, ed. Michel Feher, Ramona Naddoff, and Nadia Tazi (Cambridge,
Press, 1989), 2:222.
4. Sara Sturm-Maddox, Petrarch's Laurels (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh
Press, 1992); Nancy Vickers, "Vital Signs: Petrarch and Popular Culture," Romanic
Review 77 (1988): 184-95·
Lyotard, Discours, fi8ure (Paris: Klincksieck,
p. 378; the
translation is Bill Readings's, cited in Inrroducin8 Lyotard (London: Routledge,
1991), p. 26. I am indebted to Bill Readings for introducing me to Lyotard through
his remarkably astute readings, readings which consistently place Lyotard in a
literary context. In this passage, Lyotard refers to two anamorphic portraits: the
first, analyzed by Stephen Greenblatt in Renaissance Self-Fashionin8 (Chicago:
University of Chicago Press, 1980), pp. 17-27, is Holbein's Ambassadors; the sec-
ond, discussed by Jurgis Baltrusaitis in Anamorphoses,
maBie artificielle des
elfets merveilleux (Paris: Olivier Perrin, 1969), pp. 91-116, is a portrait of Charles I,
done in 1649 by an anonymous royalist sympathizer after Charles's death. In order
to see the "good form" in the Charles portrait, the viewer needs a cylindrical
mirror. Otherwise, like a television image where the vertical-horizontal button is
nonfunctional, the king is a distorted crescent of a man.
6. See Baltrusaitis, Anamorphoses,
maBie artificielle des elfers merveilleux,