Boccaccio's Decameron and the Ciceronian Renaissance (Palgrave Macmillan), which became available at Amazon.com this week, is a new and comprehensive rereading of Boccaccio's masterpiece in the light of its Ciceronian heritage. Our book owes its existence to almost 40 years of mutual study and conversation, during which Micha and I, both professors of literature, assigned and taught the Decameron as a complete work to upper-division courses. Early on we realized that the Decameron was an allegory suggesting many aspects of early modern thought, but it was not until 2007 that we became aware of how many of its ideas were inherited from Cicero. We began work on our book late in 2008. During the development of the first draft we gained much from the readings and advice of our friend Charles Muscatine, a great medievalist and critic par excellence, whose death in early 2010 robbed the humanities of a heroic presence.
Marital co-authorship proved to be a unique experience. Our skill-sets matched up well with each other and allowed for a productive division of labor. During composition and revision we experienced many delightful moments of shared discovery; and our disagreements, though sometimes sharp, were always resolved with our readers' good in mind.
Boccaccio's Decameron and the Ciceronian Renaissance is an expensive book ($85 at Amazon). But we look forward to a paperback, as well as to an e-book. Until then, we would be grateful if you mentioned it to your local librarian.