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Title:Localizing the Holy Land: The Visual Culture of Crusade in England, circa 1140-1307
Author(s):Whatley, Laura J.
Director of Research:Hedeman, Anne D.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Hedeman, Anne D.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Ousterhout, Robert G.; Symes, Carol L.; Reeve, Matthew M.
Department / Program:Art & Design
Discipline:Art History
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Medieval Art
Abstract:Broadly defining crusading as both a physical act and a spiritual goal, this is a diachronic study of the impact of the crusade movement and devotion to the holy city of Jerusalem on English visual culture, religious imagination and identity. The crusade movement concurrently formed dynamic international networks and disturbed geographic, cultural, religious and social boundaries in both the East and West. Because the most immediate zone for cultural and artistic exchange during the Crusades was the Holy Land, it has been the subject of immense amounts of historical and art historical scholarship examining issues of cultural and visual appropriation, assimilation and even resistance. However, the remapping of Christian territory after the First Crusade (1095-99), the establishment of transnational corporations (i.e., the military orders) and the reinvigoration of travel between East and West had an equally profound, yet surprisingly unexplored, impact on the visual culture and religious imagination of western Europe. Analyzing diverse visual material, from images of the military orders on seals, and monastic maps of Palestine in manuscripts, to royal chambers with paintings of holy warfare and the display of Holy Land relics at court, my project juxtaposes sacred and secular commissions made for crusaders and affiliates of chivalric culture. It also analyzes art for those, like monks, who would never physically experience Jerusalem. My study considers the role of crusade in the construction of personal and institutional identity in England, proposing, for instance, that the English kings were increasingly compelled to fashion themselves in the idealized image of the rex crucesignatus, crusader king. It carefully tracks the evolving vision of the Holy Land in England as destination, image, spectacle, or goal adapted and domesticated for English patrons and audiences over the longue durée. Finally it shows there was a concerted effort in England to localize the crusade movement and make it an explicitly English phenomenon, and to domesticate the Holy Land, especially Jerusalem, through art and architecture, ritual and display.
Issue Date:2011-01-21
Rights Information:Copyright 2010 Laura Julinda Whatley
Date Available in IDEALS:2013-01-22
Date Deposited:2010-12

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