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  • feedwordpress 08:01:38 on 2018/07/21 Permalink
    Tags: , , , imagery, , monsters, prejudice, Roman Inquisition, ,   

    “Life swarms with innocent monsters”*… 

     

    MS H.8, Fol. 191 verso, St. Martha taming the tarasque. St. Martha preaching (margin), and initial O, “Hours of Henry VIII”MS H.8, "Hours of Henry VIII,” book of hours, France, Tours, ca. 1500

    “The Taming the Tarasque,” from Hours of Henry VIII, France, Tours, ca. 1500

     

    From dragons and unicorns to mandrakes and griffins, monsters and medieval times are inseparable in the popular imagination. But medieval depictions of monsters—the subject of a fascinating new exhibition at the Morgan Library & Museum in Manhattan [which includes the image above]—weren’t designed simply to scare their viewers: They had many purposes, and provoked many reactions. They terrified, but they also taught. They enforced prejudices and social hierarchies, but they also inspired unlikely moments of empathy. They were medieval European propaganda, science, art, theology, and ethics all at once…

    Finding the meaning in monsters: “The Symbols of Prejudice Hidden in Medieval Art.”

    * Charles Baudelaire

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    As we decode dragons, we might recall that it was on this date in 1542, with Pope Paul III’s papal bull Licet ab initio, that the Roman Inquisition formally began.  In the tradition of the medieval inquisitions, and “inspired” by the Spanish Inquisition, the Roman Inquisition gave six cardinals six cardinals the power to arrest and imprison anyone suspected of heresy, to confiscate their property, and to put them to death.

    While not so much in the prudish spirit of Savonarola’s “Bonfire of the Vanities,”  the Roman Inquisition– which lasted in the 18th century– was ruthless in rooting out what it considered dangerous deviations from orthodoxy.  Copernicus, Galileo, Giordano Bruno, and Cesare Cremonini were all persecuted.  While only Bruno was executed, the others were effectively (or actually) banished, and in the cases of Copernicus and Galileo, their works were placed on  the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (the Catholic Church’s Index of Forbidden Books).

    inquisition source

     

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:21 on 2014/04/07 Permalink
    Tags: Atlas of Prejudice, Balkans, , , , prejudice, Tito, ,   

    “To understand Europe, you have to be a genius – or French”*… 

     

    Designer Yanko Tsvetkov is a man of many projects.  The maps above are an excerpt (from an excerpt) from his recent book Atlas of Prejudice, Volume 2.  See all 20 of his painfully-funny dissections of Europe here; then browse through more of his wonderful work.

    *Madeleine Albright

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    As we stuff our backpacks, we might recall that it was on this date in 1963 that Josip Broz Tito was named President-for Life of the newly re-named Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.  The Yugoslav state had been during World War II; it was a socialist state, a federation made up of six socialist republics: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia,Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Slovenia. (Serbia included two autonomous provinces: Vojvodina and Kosovo).  Tito had served as Prime Minister of the Federal People’s Republic of Yugoslavia from it’s formation; he had become the first President of Yugoslavia when that office was created in 1953.

    Initially aligned with Stalin and the East, Yugoslavia declared itself non-aligned in 1948.  It refused to participate in the Warsaw Pact, pursuing instead it’s own brand of market socialism, sometimes informally called “Titoism.” Steady increases in economic and political freedoms helped Yugoslavia’s economy grow, and made the country far more humane than other Socialist/Communist regimes.  At the same time, in devolving more power/autonomy to the regions– originally separate countries– that made up Yugoslavia, it sewed the seeds of the Balkan conflict that began to kindle on Tito’s death in 1980.

     source

     

     
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