An Intellectual History of Cannibalism

Over the years, I’ve read one of Montagne’s more famous essays, On Cannibals, perhaps three times, and frankly thought the subject was pretty much put to bed except for modern curiosity and horror movies of the criminally insane, e.g. Hannibal Lecter. Further, reading Montagne is generally educational for understanding the proper structure and tone of the essay, possibly more important than the subject matter. And I always liked his remark, which put it all in perspective:

So we may well call these people barbarians, in respect to the rules of reason, but not in respect to ourselves, who surpass them in every kind of barbarity.

But now we have  a book review titled, People Who Eat People from The Los Angeles Review of Books looking at a new new book by Cătălin Avramescu, An Intellectual History of Cannibalism, translated from the Romanian by Alistair Ian Blyth. This book may be saying the same thing.

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