Negotiating National Prospects by Capturing the Medieval Past: Byzantium in Serbian Architectural History at the Turn of the 20th Century
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The truism that the birth of the discipline of architectural history in Serbia was entwined with national emancipation and the construction of an authentic national identity is questioned by the position of the Byzantine cultural heritage in the Serbian architectural past. The germ of »national architecture« – conveniently identified with that of the Middle Ages – was an image of Serbian culture as part of the Byzantine that problematized the very idea of an original, authentic Serbian identity. This paper will explore the question of the Serbian national narrative torn between a need for cultural authenticity and an imperial mission, and focus on the context in which this duality became a recognizable ideological agenda that justified Serbian political projects in an era when the Kingdom of Serbia was on the cusp of national, cultural and territorial expansion.
Keywords:Byzantine Studies / Medieval architecture / Medieval art / Historiography / Nationalism / National identity / The Kingdom of Yugoslavia
Source:Imagining Byzantium: Perceptions, Patterns, Problems, 2018, 98-109
- Mainz : Verlag des Römisch-Germanischen Zentralmuseums