Article ID: CBB509072059

The Ghastly Kitchen (2016)


The metaphor of “the ghastly kitchen” of life science research, the places that, said the nineteenth-century physiologist Claude Bernard, stirred “the fetid and throbbing ground of life,” is well known. In the seventeenth century, the kitchen, and particularly the scullery, was the site of the slaughter, butchery, and dismemberment by carving of a variety of animals. The tools and techniques employed in these activities overlapped considerably with those of animal and human dissection. Dissection often took place in residences and the kitchen was the most likely place for this activity. This challenges historians’ identification of the kitchen as an exclusively female realm. The preparation of food and medicines occurred in tandem with experimental natural philosophy, sharing tools as well as the sensory apparatus of cooking, including tasting and smelling.

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Authors & Contributors
Nunn, Hilary M.
Egmond, Florike
Zwijnenberg, Robert
Constable, Anthony R.
Blaufox, M. Donald
Ongaro, Giuseppe
Bulletin of the Scientific Instrument Society
Atti e memorie dell'Accademia Galileiana (Pt. 2, Memorie della classe di scienze matematiche e naturali)
French Historical Studies
Ambix: Journal of the Society for the History of Alchemy and Chemistry
Early Science and Medicine: A Journal for the Study of Science, Technology and Medicine in the Pre-modern Period
Ashgate Publishing
MIT Press
Wallstein Verlag
Bononia University Press
Medical instruments and apparatus
Science and society
Science and culture
Fabrici d'Acquapendente, Girolamo
Perrault, Charles
Perrault, Claude
Colbert, Jean Baptiste
Santorio, Santorio
Andreae, Tobias
Time Periods
17th century
18th century
19th century
16th century
Early modern
Great Britain
Oxford University
Académie Royale des Sciences (France)
Bologna. Università

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