Other Renaissances: In Honor of John Marino

AHA Session 9
Society for Italian Historical Studies 1
Thursday, January 7, 2016: 1:00 PM-3:00 PM
Room 302 (Hilton Atlanta, Third Floor)
Guido Ruggiero, University of Miami
The Alpine Renaissance
Matthew A. Vester, West Virginia University
Venice and the Mediterranean World
Joanne M. Ferraro, San Diego State University
Guido Ruggiero, University of Miami

Session Abstract

Spanning four decades, John Marino's work transformed the way historians look at Early Modern Europe and the Mediterranean world. Working broadly on "the long sixteenth century," he moved the Renaissance beyond the traditional centers of Italy, publishing widely on Southern Italy and the Mediterranean. From economic life to ritual culture, Marino placed the Italian Renaissance on a Mediterranean and global stage, particularly demonstrating the influence of the Spanish Empire on Naples and the Italian peninsula. As his last book, Becoming Neapolitan: Citizen Culture in Baroque Naples, illustrates so well, he was always opening the Renaissance to exciting new dimensions and other vistas.

This panel is a testament to the wide influence of John Marino's work, focusing on the idea of Renaissances, broadly conceived. Edward Muir's paper introduces this panel, arguing that John Marino's work on Naples constituted a renaissance of its own, bringing Naples back into a field that had forgotten the city in favor of the republics of the north. Next, Matthew Vester addresses the state of the historiography of the Alpine mountains, so long removed from Renaissance studies, focusing on the connections between politics and culture to show that, just like Naples, the Alps were an important feature of the Renaissance deserving of their own study. Joanne Ferraro's paper then focuses on material culture of the Renaissance, examining the cultural exchange between Venice and the Mediterranean world that remained vital even as the Venetian maritime empire slowly diminished. Finally, Carolyn Zimmerman brings another city frequently ignored by Renaissance historians, Siena, and its way of living with foreign domination into focus; her paper explores how a Sienese academic culture responded to the political conditions that, in many ways, redefined the last years of the Italian Renaissance. Combined, these papers provide evidence of the wide influence of John Marino's work, demonstrating that his legacy will continue to shape the way historians analyze and explain the Renaissance, increasing understanding of the Italian peninsula while also integrating it into the wider early modern world.

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