Reconstruction and Repossession in Rome’s Early Medieval Charitable Hostels
Gregor Kalas (University of Tennessee, Knoxville)
Tuesday, May 3 | 4:45 EST
Guerlac Room, AD White House
Rome's xenodochia, or hostels for foreigners, operated as charities sponsored by aristocrats prior to the year 600 CE. This talk examines the reuse of ancient structures to house needy travelers under patronage by the elite, including members of the Valerii and Anicii families together with the Byzantine general Belisarius, in order to connect physical acts of restoration with rhetorical claims to have rehabilitated the social order. Elite civic officials in Rome repaired their reputations as they restored ancient buildings to accommodate foreigners or possibly pilgrims, the talk argues, since acts of restoration legitimized bolds steps in which the aristocrats appropriated civic structures.
BIO: Gregor Kalas is the author of The Restoration of the Roman Forum in Late Antiquity: Transforming Public Space (Austin, 2015) and co-editor of the volume, Urban Developments in Late Antique and Medieval Rome: Revising the Narrative of Renewal (Amsterdam, 2021). He is an associate professor of architectural history at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where he is the Riggsby Director of the Marco Institute for Medieval and Renaissance Studies
Free and open to the public.
Cosponsored by the Society for the Humanities, Department of the History of Art and Visual Studies, and Quodlibet
View here on Cornell Events.
The Cornell presents lectures on a wide range of medieval topics. All lectures this spring take place on Tuesdays at 4:45pm.