In Search of the Labyrinth - Nicoletta Momigliano


In the mid-19th century the Darwinian revolution and the discovery of the antiquity of mankind sparked a vigorous search for origins and a widespread interest in prehistory. In the 1870s, Heinrich Schliemanns famous excavations at Troy and Mycenae opened a new chapter in the history of the ancient world and appeared to provide flesh and blood to mythical Greek heroes.

In the early 1900s, the spectacular discoveries by Sir Arthur Evans and other archaeologists in Crete provided an even longer perspective on the origins of Greece and Europe, by discovering an older civilization, dubbed Minoan after the mythical figure of King Minos. Ever since its rediscovery in the early 20th century, Minoan Crete has intrigued and captivated not only archaeologists and other specialists in the ancient world, but also a much wider public, which included famous novelists, poets, avant-garde artists, couturiers, musicians, philosophers, architects, film directors, and even psychoanalysts from Sigmund Freud to Marcel Proust, D.H. Lawrence, Cecil Day-Lewis, Oswald Spengler, Nikos Kazantzakis, Robert Graves, André Gide, Mary Renault, Christa Wolf, Don DeLillo, Rhea Galanaki, Léon Bakst, Marc Chagall, Mariano Fortuny y Madrazo, Robert Wise, Martin Heidegger, Karl Lagerfeld, and Harrison Birtwistle, among many others.

This volume explores the enduring cultural legacy of Minoan Crete through Minoan archaeology and modern responses to Minoan Crete. Although the emphasis is on the 20th century, it also examines the fascination with things Minoan in antiquity and in the current new millennium: from Minoan-inspired motifs in the iconography of the Greek Early Iron Age, to uses of the Minoans in 21st-century music, poetry, fashion, and other media. In all these cases, Momigliano shows how there is clear engagement with the material culture of Minoan Crete, not just with narratives about the House of King Minos derived from Classical sources.

Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic

Published: September 2020

Format: Paperback

Pages: 448

Dimensions: 15.52 x 2.18 x 23.62 cm

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