The "Mongrel style" : one century of use and abuse of Sicilian syncretism

Title: The "Mongrel style" : one century of use and abuse of Sicilian syncretism
Variant title:
  • "Mongrelský styl" : sto let užívání a zneužívání sicilského synkretismu
Source document: Convivium. 2018, vol. 5, iss. 1, pp. 202-219
  • ISSN
    2336-3452 (print)
    2336-808X (online)
Type: Article
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In what ways has Sicilian medieval architectural syncretism been interpreted historiographically, been exploited politically, and inspired architects and patrons between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries? First, the analysis presented here concentrates on the identification of Sicily in its Norman past and the increasing awareness of its medieval cultural koine. It goes on to explore the various approaches to this architectural heritage in European countries such as France and Germany, which perceived Sicilian syncretism as both "self" and "other". Texts, buildings and projects that refer to, or are inspired by, the "hybridism" of medieval Sicily are analyzed in light of the great forces that shaped the Western culture of Europe: Nationalism, Orientalism, Imperialism and Nazism. Finally, the article refers to some current interpretations of the hybrid nature of Norman architecture and the meaning of this "diversity".
This article is based upon research funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft.