Pani cerimoniali e tavole rituali in Sicilia

Risultato della ricerca: Conference contribution


For centuries wheat bread has been a constitutive and qualifying element of the aristocratic and peasant canteens of Sicily. A concrete outcome of a seasonal work cycle, bread was considered, food par excellence, sacred food. The gestures that preceded and accompanied their preparation and consumption were ritualized and imbued with meanings transcending the pure act of nutrition.Given the very strong symbolic value it holds, it is not surprising that offers and collective consumption of bread are still attested today in numerous religious festivals. The breads prepared on these occasions are not the everyday ones. They have peculiar morphologies and are prepared according to procedures aimed at highlighting the other dimension of the holiday time compared to the weekday. For this reason the different types of bread become an indispensable sign, a constitutive and functional element of each specific celebration.The festive bread, distributed, broken, eaten thus becomes, at the same time, a sign of a devotion, symbol of the community, an instrument of communication between men and between men and the celebrated Saint. The circulation and abundance of food, in fact, on the one hand reproduce and consolidate the chains of interpersonal and community alliances on the other hand convey meanings functionally linked to life and rebirth.This view of the world, typical of agro-pastoral civilizations, is especially visible in the ceremonies dedicated to Saint Joseph, whose characteristic elements are, precisely, the plastically worked loaves arranged on the "altars", the "tables" and the "tables" intended for to be ritually consumed by the "Holy Family", by the "Apostles", by the "Virgineddi", that is destined to be offered and shared with the representatives of that transcendent dimension from which cycles are believed to depend, beyond all human commitment, the cycles vitality and community welfare.
Lingua originaleItalian
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteIl sacro pasto: le tavole degli uomini e degli dèi
Numero di pagine17
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2019

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