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Föreställd hedendom. Tidigmedeltida skandinaviska kyrkportar i forskning och historia

Nordanskog, Gunnar LU (2006)
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Avhandlingen diskuterar tidigmedeltida skandinavisk konst, främst kyrkdörrar och portaler från Sverige och Norge. Kyrkans ingång är särskilt lämplig att studera dels eftersom den markerade en gräns för det heliga rummet, dels därför att den var en viktig mötesplats i lokalsamhällena. Genom kontextualiseringar och kritisk forskningshistorik skapas en delvis ny bild av detta källmaterial.



Jag argumenterar för att portarnas ?förkristna? och ?folkliga? inslag har överdrivits i tidigare forskning. De ska inte förstås som utslag av förkristna kontinuiteter från vikingatiden, utan hör snarare samman med ett förnyat intresse för det förgångna från slutet av 1100-talet och in i... (More)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Avhandlingen diskuterar tidigmedeltida skandinavisk konst, främst kyrkdörrar och portaler från Sverige och Norge. Kyrkans ingång är särskilt lämplig att studera dels eftersom den markerade en gräns för det heliga rummet, dels därför att den var en viktig mötesplats i lokalsamhällena. Genom kontextualiseringar och kritisk forskningshistorik skapas en delvis ny bild av detta källmaterial.



Jag argumenterar för att portarnas ?förkristna? och ?folkliga? inslag har överdrivits i tidigare forskning. De ska inte förstås som utslag av förkristna kontinuiteter från vikingatiden, utan hör snarare samman med ett förnyat intresse för det förgångna från slutet av 1100-talet och in i 1200-talet. Inhemska traditioner med förkristna rötter syns främst i sockenkyrkorna, men kunde användas även i centralkyrkliga miljöer. Samma tendens fanns på kontinenten där texter och motiv från antiken kom till användning, men i Skandinavien finns exempel på att de inhemska motiven har ersatt dem från den klassiska antiken. Detta passade in i en ?protonationell? diskurs som har gjort avtryck i de skriftliga källorna, exemplifierat av Snorre och Saxo, och ska inte förstås som religiöst problematiskt.



Ett flertal olika tolkningsmodeller diskuteras. Möjligen kunde det specifikt nordiska användas i riks- och kyrkopolitiska syften och i samband med övergången till sockenkyrkosystemet, där en större del av befolkningen än tidigare inlemmades i den kyrkliga organisationen. Sannolikt har både centrala och lokala aktörer varit aktiva i denna process, och det går inte att trovärdigt argumentera för att det varit fråga om någon enkelriktad propaganda. Avhandlingens viktigaste slutsats är att den här studerade konsten inte ska förstås som utslag av ett efterblivet och perifert Skandinavien under 1200-talet. Snarare var den resultatet av självmedvetna personer som med hjälp av litteratur och bildkonst skapade sin egen plats i det kristna Europa. (Less)
Abstract
The thesis discusses Medieval Scandinavian art, in particular church doors and portals from 12th and 13th century Sweden and Norway. The entrance of the church was a demarcation of holiness, but also a meeting place for the local communities, where otherwise secular activities could be legitimatized by the ecclesiastical context. This makes the doors and portals of special interest for the study of social interaction through means of visual communication.



It is argued that the ?pre-Christian? and ?folkloristic? traits in the images, symbols and styles of the doors and portals have been overemphasized in earlier research. These traits should not be understood as pagan relicts in an unbroken continuity from the Viking Age,... (More)
The thesis discusses Medieval Scandinavian art, in particular church doors and portals from 12th and 13th century Sweden and Norway. The entrance of the church was a demarcation of holiness, but also a meeting place for the local communities, where otherwise secular activities could be legitimatized by the ecclesiastical context. This makes the doors and portals of special interest for the study of social interaction through means of visual communication.



It is argued that the ?pre-Christian? and ?folkloristic? traits in the images, symbols and styles of the doors and portals have been overemphasized in earlier research. These traits should not be understood as pagan relicts in an unbroken continuity from the Viking Age, but rather as the results of a newborn interest in the past from around 1200 AD and into the 13th century. Decorative art with connections to the pre-Christian past is most frequently occurring in parish churches, but could theoretically also have been used in the cathedrals. The same tendencies existed on the Continent, where texts and motifs from the Classical Antiquity came to use. In Scandinavia however, there are examples of indigenous pre-Christian motifs being used instead of antique ones. This was consistent with a proto-national discourse known from written sources, and should not be understood as religiously problematic.



A variety of models of interpretation are discussed. It is possible that the indigenous motifs were used in state- and Church policy and in connection with the emerging parish church system where the churchwardens gained influence at the expense of the patrons. It is likely that both central and local actors were participating in this process, and the idea that the art functioned as a one-way propaganda should be dismissed. The most important conclusion is that the church art in this study should not be understood as reflections of a backward and peripheral Scandinavia in the 13th century. Rather, it was the result of assertive and fully Christianized people who were finding their own ways in a wider European context. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
supervisor
opponent
  • Prof. Bolvig, Axel, Copenhagen
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Archaeology, Konsthistoria, Art history, Medeltidens historia, Medieval history, pre-Christian religion, Scandinavia, Middle Ages, Church art, Arkeologi
pages
414 pages
publisher
Nordic Academic Press
defense location
Edens hörsal
defense date
2006-11-18 10:15
ISSN
1650-5905
ISBN
91-89116-85-2
language
Swedish
LU publication?
yes
id
349cd958-df0b-47e7-8bb4-484fd5e1e4a3 (old id 25921)
date added to LUP
2007-06-05 13:45:46
date last changed
2018-11-21 20:35:15
@phdthesis{349cd958-df0b-47e7-8bb4-484fd5e1e4a3,
  abstract     = {The thesis discusses Medieval Scandinavian art, in particular church doors and portals from 12th and 13th century Sweden and Norway. The entrance of the church was a demarcation of holiness, but also a meeting place for the local communities, where otherwise secular activities could be legitimatized by the ecclesiastical context. This makes the doors and portals of special interest for the study of social interaction through means of visual communication.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
It is argued that the ?pre-Christian? and ?folkloristic? traits in the images, symbols and styles of the doors and portals have been overemphasized in earlier research. These traits should not be understood as pagan relicts in an unbroken continuity from the Viking Age, but rather as the results of a newborn interest in the past from around 1200 AD and into the 13th century. Decorative art with connections to the pre-Christian past is most frequently occurring in parish churches, but could theoretically also have been used in the cathedrals. The same tendencies existed on the Continent, where texts and motifs from the Classical Antiquity came to use. In Scandinavia however, there are examples of indigenous pre-Christian motifs being used instead of antique ones. This was consistent with a proto-national discourse known from written sources, and should not be understood as religiously problematic.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
A variety of models of interpretation are discussed. It is possible that the indigenous motifs were used in state- and Church policy and in connection with the emerging parish church system where the churchwardens gained influence at the expense of the patrons. It is likely that both central and local actors were participating in this process, and the idea that the art functioned as a one-way propaganda should be dismissed. The most important conclusion is that the church art in this study should not be understood as reflections of a backward and peripheral Scandinavia in the 13th century. Rather, it was the result of assertive and fully Christianized people who were finding their own ways in a wider European context.},
  author       = {Nordanskog, Gunnar},
  isbn         = {91-89116-85-2},
  issn         = {1650-5905},
  keyword      = {Archaeology,Konsthistoria,Art history,Medeltidens historia,Medieval history,pre-Christian religion,Scandinavia,Middle Ages,Church art,Arkeologi},
  language     = {swe},
  pages        = {414},
  publisher    = {Nordic Academic Press},
  school       = {Lund University},
  title        = {Föreställd hedendom. Tidigmedeltida skandinaviska kyrkportar i forskning och historia},
  year         = {2006},
}