Admiration and Awe: Morisco Buildings and Identity Negotiations in Early Modern Spanish Historiography

Admiration and Awe: Morisco Buildings and Identity Negotiations in Early Modern Spanish Historiography

by Antonio Urquizar-Herrera


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This book offers the first systematic analysis of the cultural and religious appropriation of Andalusian architecture by Spanish historians during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. To date this process of Christian appropriation has generally been discussed as a phenomenon of architectural hybridization. However, this was a period in which the construction of a Spanish national identity became a key focus of historical discourse. As a result, cultural hybridity encountered partial opposition from those seeking to establish cultural and religious homogeneity.

Spain's Islamic past became a major concern in this period and historical writing served as the site for a complex negotiation of identity. Historians and antiquarians used a range of strategies to re-appropriate the meaning of medieval Islamic heritage as befitted the new identity of Spain as a Catholic monarchy and empire. On the one hand, the monuments' Islamic origin was subjected to historical revisions and re-identified as Roman or Phoenician. On the other hand, religious forgeries were invented that staked claims for buildings and cities having been founded by Christians prior to the arrival of the Muslims in Spain. Islamic stones were used as core evidence in debates that shaped the early development of archaeology, and they also became the centre of a historical controversy about the origin of Spain as a nation as well as its ecclesiastical history.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780198797456
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 07/11/2017
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 9.30(w) x 6.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Antonio Urquizar-Herrera is Associate Professor at the History of Art Department of the UNED, Madrid, as well as Life Member at Clare Hall, University of Cambridge. He has published several monographs about Early Modern Art in Spain, among them Coleccionismo y nobleza. Signos de distincion social en la Andalucia del Renacimiento (2007). He has also published more than thirty book chapters and articles in International and Spanish peer review journals. He has been principle investigator of a number of different research groups and research projects on Early Modern Art in Spain.

Table of Contents

Preface: The Islamic Stones of Spain, Today
1. Conquest and Plunder
2. The Notion of the Loss of Spain
3. Islamic Monuments as Christian Trophies
4. Historical Dislocation and Antiquarian Appropriation
5. The Foundations of an Antiquarian Literature for Islamic Architecture
6. The Antiquarian Appropriation of Islamic Monuments
7. The Religious Use of the Antiquarian Model
8. Genealogical Forgery and Continuity of Christian Worship
9. Calling on the Martyrs: The Final Atonement of Islamic Architecture
10. Charting the Impact of Historiographical Texts?

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