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The Art and Architecture of Sicily: Byzantine, Islamic, and Northern European Influences

Sicily, throughout its history, has been extraordinarily cosmopolitan, an island on which different religious communities coexisted and several languages were spoken. The genesis of this multi- and intercultural society can be traced to when the island was part of the Byzantine Empire and culturally Greek, and the subsequent Arab occupation of the ninth century. After the Norman conquest, which began in 1061, Sicily became an independent and powerful kingdom. The art and architecture of its capital, Palermo, embody the region’s multicultural history and provide us with stunning examples of the fusion of Byzantine, Islamic, and North European forms. In this course, we will explore a sometimes overlooked aspect of Italian history by examining the Norman architectural treasures of Sicily, many of which were recently designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

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You'll Walk Away with

  • Knowledge of the history of Sicily
  • The ability to recognize and describe Islamic, Byzantine, and Northern European influences on Sicilian architecture
  • Familiarity with the architectural treasures of Sicily built in Norman times

Ideal for

  • Art enthusiasts
  • Practicing and aspiring arts professionals
NO open sections available for this course at the moment. Please check back next semester.