What We Are Reading Today: Walker Evans: Starting from Scratch by Svetlana Alpers

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What We Are Reading Today: Ravenna; Capital of Empire, Crucible of Europe by Judith Herrin

At the top of the fourth century, as the facility of Rome light and Constantinople grew to become the seat of empire, a brand new capital metropolis was rising within the West. Here, in Ravenna on the coast of Italy, Arian Goths and Catholic Romans competed to supply an unmatched focus of buildings and astonishing mosaics. For three centuries, the town attracted students, legal professionals, craftsmen, and non secular luminaries, changing into a real cultural and political capital. Bringing this extraordinary historical past marvelously to life, Judith Herrin rewrites the historical past of East and West within the Mediterranean world earlier than the rise of Islam and reveals how, because of Byzantine affect, Ravenna performed a vital position within the improvement of medieval Christendom.

Drawing on deep, unique analysis, Herrin tells the private tales of Ravenna whereas setting them in a sweeping synthesis of Mediterranean and Christian historical past. She narrates the lives of the Empress Galla Placidia and the Gothic king Theoderic and describes the achievements of an incredible cosmographer and a health care provider who revived Greek medical information in Italy, demolishing the concept the West simply descended into the medieval “Dark Ages.”

Beautifully illustrated and drawing on the newest archaeological findings, this monumental e-book supplies a daring new interpretation of Ravenna’s lasting affect on the tradition of Europe and the West.



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