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The Power of Symbols

The Alhambra in a Global Perspective

Edited By Francine Giese and Ariane Varela Braga

This volume intends to foster a re-interpretation of the Nasrid architecture of the Alhambra in Granada and its post-Islamic appropriation and global diffusion. Taking into account the current debates on otherness, cultural exchange and artistic transfer, hybridization, stylistic renewal and national identity building, this collection of essays explores the significance of the Alhambra from the Nasrid period to the present time. Built as a military fortress and gradually enlarged to a multi-functional palace city, by the 19th century the Alhambra became a symbol of exoticism and reverie. As one of the most important legacies of the Islamic heritage of al-Andalus, its role as a mediator between East and West is more important than ever.

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Author’s Biographies


Davy Depelchin (PhD in Art History, Ghent University) is lecturer at the Open University of the Netherlands. He previously worked as a researcher for the Belgian Science Policy Office at the Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium in Brussels (2009–2016). He is the author of journal articles and book chapters on Orientalism in nineteenth-­century architecture and fine arts, as well as the curator of several exhibitions on this topic.

Edhem Eldem teaches at the Department of History of Boğaziçi University and holds the International Chair for Turkish and Ottoman Studies at the Collège de France. He has taught at Berkeley, Harvard, Columbia, as well as the EHESS, EPHE, and ENS in Paris. His recent research focuses on the artist and museologist Osman Hamdi Bey, archaeology in the Ottoman Empire, and Ottoman photography.

Josephin Heller studierte Kunstgeschichte und Theaterwissenschaft im Bachelor an der Universität Leipzig. Dort schloss sie 2013 ihren Master in Kunstgeschichte mit dem Schwerpunkt auf Architektur und Urbanistik ab (Thema der Masterarbeit: Das maurische Bad auf Schloss Albrechtsberg in Dresden von Carl von Diebitsch im Kontext der Alhambrarezeption des 19. Jahrhunderts). Es folgten Zahlreiche Tagungs-, Ausstellungs- und Publikationsprojekte während und nach dem Studium am Institut für Kunstgeschichte, der Kustodie und dem Institut für Theaterwissenschaft an der Universität Leipzig. Derzeit arbeitet sie als Stipendiatin der Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung an ihrer Promotion.

Hildegard Frübis. Promotion 1993 an der Universität Tübingen („Die...

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