Tommaso di Carpegna Falconieri, The Militant Middle Ages: Contemporary Politics between New Barbarians and Modern Crusaders, trans. Andrew M. Hiltzik. Leiden: Brill, 2020.
Reviewed by Matthias D. Berger (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The Middle Ages, Tommaso di Carpegna Falconieri argues in his 2011 book newly translated into English, hold an ambiguous yet privileged position in our time: “There is, perhaps, no other historical epoch that provides our contemporary world with so much nourishment for our own imaginations” (1). Carpegna Falconieri’s wide-ranging book proceeds from the observation that the medieval has the unique ability to cater to statements of identity at all levels of society, from the local to the national to the mega-identity of “Western culture” (6). The book focuses on the politics of these (in a wider sense) “identitarian Middle Ages” (74). Highlighting the strong connection between medievalism and public action and hence the potential for “militancy” which medievalism harbours, it sets out to offer a panorama of Western, mainly European, medievalism in recent decades.
This English translation by Andrew M. Hiltzik is the latest instalment in Brill’s “National Cultivation of Culture” series. Edited by Joep Leerssen, the series covers (mainly but not exclusively) the many forms of cultural nationalism that emerged in the nineteenth century, for example in language politics, philology, folklore studies, historical fiction, and so forth. READ FULL REVIEW @ Medievally Speaking
Medievalism, Médiévalisme, Medievalismo, Mediävalismus, Reception of the Middle Ages