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For marginalised individuals and groups who have felt the pain and the joys of the past these needs tend to be acute. Storytelling through various media can play a small but significant part in meeting these needs. We are not an exclusive Centre and we acknowledge that there are different sites of popular memory throughout the African continent.

Given that memories are especially shaped and conserved by relationships between people, we aim to facilitate dialogues across generations and sites of popular memory. The Memory Experience is a new series of programmes all about memory that is currently being broadcast weekly on BBC Radio 4. As a forerunner to the season, visitors to bbc. The challenges include: remembering sequences of numbers; spotting differences between images; replicating patterns and remembering everyday objects.

The test will collect data for Professor Robert Logie at the University of Edinburgh to ascertain how memory is affected by lifestyle, location, age and sex. As part of the Memory Experience, the Share section of this site, together with the Leeds Memory Group, launches an ambitious online survey to explore our national identity by collecting and sharing autobiographical memories from the public.

Professor Martin Conway of Leeds University will be keeping us up to date with his findings and at the end of the survey there will be a run of programmes analysing the results of the experiment and reflecting the public events listeners have nominated as their key memories for each generation.

Memory Studies will examine the social, cultural, political and technological shifts affecting how, what and why individuals, groups and societies remember. The Journal will probe and challenge proliferating public and academic discourses on the nature, forms and consequences of memory in the contemporary era and will provide paradigmatic strength and direction to the emerging field.

The memory of violence that I am going to explore in this paper raises some fundamental questions about what falls under the category of violence — do all forms of violence acquire the same symbolic status when recognized as violence? What counts as violence and what, on the other hand, is rendered invisible or unnameable as violence? Revolutionary movements such as the one my research is on mirror a wider politics of naming violence, which legitimates certain kinds of violence while rendering others invisible.

Much like the state, revolutionary movements confer legitimacy upon their own acts of militancy, thereby effacing violence in the rhetoric of liberation. These forms of violence, locatable in the politics of everyday life, often threaten the codes of internal solidarity and are subject not simply to forgetting but to active repression.

Placed upon a continuum of violence, forms of regularized and cumulative violence that are internal to a political community occupy the lowest position in terms of visibility and social recognition. In so doing, I explore how some forms of violence are more easily remembered, grieved, or even valorized than others, at the level of the individual and a culture, and the gendered dynamics of such forms of remembrance.

Members of this group and their sympathizers came to be known as Naxalites. Small guerrilla units primarily of men indiscriminately killed anyone from traffic policemen to local schoolteachers as representatives of the state. The movement was finally crushed in under severe state repression and partly due to the political misgivings of the Party. Stories of young idealist men being brutally tortured and shot by the police have been the most sustained component of the Naxalbari legacy.

Although contemporary Naxalite and Maoist groups operate in other parts of India, Bengal has never seen a resurgence of Naxalite violence after the events of the s—70s. Yet this movement forms an intricate thread of the lived memory of the city of Calcutta, and continues to be one of its dominant legends.

I will not go into details about sources or methodology here; we can always talk about these later. The official memory of the movement, including the writings of its key ideologue, Charu Mazumdar, is, on the whole, fairly conventional in its propagandist overtones and revolutionary fervour.

What makes revolutionary violence legitimate is the illegitimate violence of the Other, primarily the state. The state, as the only agency that can legitimately deploy violence c. Weber is, for the Naxalites as for most radical groups , criminalized. Its use of violence is rendered unjust, illegitimate, and immoral. This is the fundamental discursive strategy that the revolutionary employs to justify his acts of violence as against those of the anti—hero who is reviled as contemptuous, unjust, and criminal.

On the other hand, the violence of the hero is a locus of positive attributes — of heroic, sacrificial action, of a vision of a just and egalitarian future. These twin processes of idealizing the self and demonizing the other lie at the heart of a triumphant fantasy of revolutionary class struggle. The psychic operation of projection whereby unwanted feelings are purged from the self and placed upon others enables one to hurt the other with impunity. The imagining of revolution and its heroes enables, in this manner, a coercive misrecognition of the violence of the self.

At the heart of a romantic narrative of revolution is an emphasis on its heroic aspects and a concomitant denial of its less exciting, less glorious, and harsher realities. When state repression was at it height in s, Charu Mazumdar called for more martyrs to come forward in a public valorization of revolutionary violence. A story of romantic revolution could not afford to include unsettling images of betrayal, torture, and death that had become a daily occurrence in the life of the movement from the mid—s.

As Dawson explains in relation to war narratives, the phantasy of war as romantic adventure provides a degree of psychic defence in the face of the tensions and terrors of real—life combat. In the context of Naxalbari, narratives of glorious struggle and sacrifice for the cause enable a denial of feelings of fear, trauma, and anxiety in the face of possible death.


Remembering the Crusades: Myth, Image, and Identity by Nicholas Paul, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble®

The clearest instance of such a denial can be seen in the present—day commemoration of state repression undertaken by ex—activists and various splinter groups who broadly align to Maoist politics. Such a splintered political community commemorates the repression of the s as a testament to the brutality of the state, and to the valour of those who were martyred in its wake. However, in accepting the myth of self—sacrifice rather than the reality of death, remembrance becomes a way of forgetting violence, and of domesticating trauma.

It is through such a sacrificial memory that the state co—opts the bodies of dead soldiers, and produces closure. These modes of public remembrance have significant implications for the possibility of individual mourning.

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In the context of Naxalbari, practices of commemorating the dead as martyrs reinforce an imagined community held together by a comforting collective fantasy of revolution. In providing us with a romantic tale of sacrifice for the greater good, official and popular forms of memory diffuse past trauma.

Individual pain is left unacknowledged; individual life itself can no longer be mourned.

Remembering the crusades : myth, image, and identity

The human cost of self—sacrifice is also obliterated from collective memory. It was within such a space of refuge and safety that female activists, in particular, faced multiple forms of threat and not at the hands of the enemy alone.

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At the same time, the research overwhelmingly demonstrates how these memories of violence and betrayal could not always be articulated as testimony, not at the time of the movement, and crucially, not even today. The inability to publicly testify to sexual violence lies, for me, at the heart of the cultural practices of remembering Naxalbari that glorify some forms of violence while eliding and normalizing the experience of others.

I use the term sexual violence to capture the range of abuses and threats that women faced both as women and as sexual objects within the political field. These included acts of physical assault, rape, acts that stopped short of rape, unwanted gestures, sexually inflected and sexist comments, and domestic abuse. Several of these testimonies to violence including published ones are, however, voiced in the context of a coercive silence. This is demonstrated by the emphatic need of most of these women to remain anonymous. These thirty years have seen the flourishing of several alternative discourses and speech communities, including feminism that can potentially re—write the past.

Several ex—Naxalite women are, in fact, members of these more recent communities, and have taken up a feminist vocabulary to critique the gender blindness and sexism of the radical left. Krishna is, for instance, one of the few women who has publicly condemned male sexual violence in writing and in speech see Bandyopadhya Female testimony to sexism and sexual violence becomes, in present times, an act of betrayal.

It is perceived as a threat to an imagined political community, and thus discouraged from public discourse.

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It is thus not surprising that even when women tell a different, often traumatic story of the past, they must remain anonymous. Just as the privileging of a triumphant narrative of the movement mitigates the possibility of individual mourning with regard to political violence, it also forecloses the possibility of identifying acts of betrayal and violence that were internal to the community.

Women, my research suggests, routinely disassociated themselves from sexual victimization, downplayed, disavowed, and denied male sexual violence, defending the Party against accusations of complicity. Making creative use of Latin dynastic narratives as well as vernacular literature, personal possessions and art objects, and architecture from across western Europe, Paul shows how traditions of crusading were established and reinforced in the collective memories of noble families throughout the twelfth and thirteenth centuries.

Even rulers who never fulfilled crusading vows found their political lives dominated and, in some ways, directed by the memory of their crusading ancestors. Filled with unique insights and careful analysis, To Follow in Their Footsteps reveals the lasting impact of the crusades, beyond the expeditions themselves, on the formation of dynastic identity and the culture of the medieval European nobility.

In the year a dispute erupted over possession of a sacred object known as the Holy Cross of Two claimants, the abbey of St. Peter of Brogne and the family of the crusader Manasses of Hierges, argued that they were the rightful heirs of the object. The nature of their claims and the mode of their argumentation, as documented in a lengthy treatise composed in the year , exposes the variety of interpretations of sacred material associated with the crusades.

In claiming rightful possession of the object, the monks of Brogne insisted upon their monopoly over the legitimate interpretation of the Holy Cross as a reminder of the body and Passion of Jesus Christ. This material vernacular was understood and perhaps even deployed by the monks in their subsequent campaign to emphasize the importance of the relic in the first decade of the thirteenth century.

Family Memory and the Crusades. The death of the young Geoffrey Martel, heir to the county of Anjou, in May , precipitated a It was during this period that a writer in Anjou began the dynastic narrative tradition known as the Chronica de gestis consulum Andegavorum. This article argues that the earliest version of the angevin chronica, and in particular the unique origin legend that it provides for the comital dynasty, must be read in the context of the political crisis of — Read as a response to the crisis, the Chronica emerges as a subtle warning to Fulk V and future counts about the dangers of following bad ancestral examples.

Despite his otherwise detailed coverage of the martial adventures in the life of William Marshal, Generations of historians have struggled to understand this missing episode and have offered a variety of explanations. This article offers a new solution to this old problem, by placing the History of William Marshal for the first time in the broader landscape of contemporary writing about the crusades and the East. It is argued that the period in which the History was written was one of intense reflection on the crusading past.

A survey of contemporary narratives reveals that the biographer had two options, to admit that his crusade had been a failure, or to reground the story within a growing romance tradition. Eschewing both options, he chose silence. At some time in the second half of the twelfth century, a scribe working in the vicinity of Tours Each hero was assigned his own line, fashioned to end with a rhyme in the masculine superlative.

This essay takes as its subject two texts, the Gesta Ambaziensium dominorum Deeds of the lords o These two texts represent our only sources of information about the deeds of crusaders from the seigneurial family of Amboise on the First Crusade. The information pertaining to the Amboise crusaders in both texts is presented and it is shown that both refer to a common event that supposedly took place during the difficult siege of Antioch.

Unique passages added to the manuscript are cited which pertain not only to the lord of Amboise, Hugh of Chaumont-sur-Loire, but also to other crusaders from the Touraine region and especially to the crusade leader Stephen of Blois. The essay then argues that this variant manuscript, or at least the texts that it contains, may have been created in the mid twelfth century for the Amboise family or their sympathisers. The political crises which confronted the Amboise seigneurial family at this time are provided as the context for the creation of the variant crusade history.

The text and translation of unedited verses listing the leaders of the First Crusade found in the variant MS are included at the end of the essay. Introducing the Oxford Outremer Map. This essay introduces the reader to the map, its creator the monk Matthew Paris d. Remember me on this computer. Enter the email address you signed up with and we'll email you a reset link. Need an account?

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