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The Mamluks’ patronage of literary and scholastic arts inspired written products remarkable for their diversity. During the era of Mamluk rule, bureaucrats, jurists, essayists, poets, scholars, and theologians generated legal compendia, religious commentaries, political treatises, trust documents, literary anthologies, historical chronicles, manuals of diplomatic and statecraft, and handbooks of urban/rural topography. These works have enabled contemporary researchers to revise long-standing interpretations of traditional disciplines, and to reconsider subjects previously regarded as inaccessible due to a presumed lack of sources. Topics addressed: literary theory, popular culture, historical method, rural life, gender relations, and religious diversity. Since the Sultanate presided over the central Islamic lands during their transition from the medieval to early modern periods (7th/13th-10th/16th centuries), the insights provided by these sources, and their revisionists, are reshaping the field of Islamic History. The chapter analyzes the context of patronage of literary products by the Mamluk ruling class, and other social groups with the means and inclination to do so. It considers the audiences reflected in their contents, the evolution of languages in which they were written (primarily Arabic, but representation of Persian and Turkish as well), their principal genres (poetry/prose), and the development of Historiography.
Before the late sixteenth century, the churches of Florence were internally divided by monumental screens that separated the laity in the nave from the clergy in the choir precinct. Enabling both separation and mediation, these screens were impressive artistic structures that controlled social interactions, facilitated liturgical performances, and variably framed or obscured religious ritual and imagery. In the 1560s and 70s, screens were routinely destroyed in a period of religious reforms, irreversibly transforming the function, meaning, and spatial dynamics of the church interior. In this volume, Joanne Allen explores the widespread presence of screens and their role in Florentine social and religious life prior to the Counter-Reformation. She presents unpublished documentation and new reconstructions of screens and the choir precincts which they delimited. Elucidating issues such as gender, patronage, and class, her study makes these vanished structures comprehensible and deepens our understanding of the impact of religious reform on church architecture.
For the Elmhirsts, the arts offered a source of unity in an age of division and fragmentation, and they initiated diverse programmes at Dartington in drama, dance, music, arts education, film, crafts and the visual arts to further their unitive vision. The tensions that arose in the course of these activities echoed wider debates about the role of creativity in society: between modernist ‘formalist’ art – eschewing any social or historical meanings – and avant-garde ‘functionalism’ that worked to restore the integration of art and life; between the craftsman-controlled, unified production process and more commercially-oriented notions of the relation between art and industry; and over what type of community art was intended to unify – the local ‘folk’, the nation, or a harmonious, global society. The difficulty in finding a coherent policy for the arts meant that the Elmhirsts gradually gravitated away from making the estate itself a replicable model for how the arts should unite society, and towards it contributing to government-led initiatives instead.
This chapter considers some of the earliest writers in the Black literary tradition in order to explore the limitations of print publication. Books by James Albert Ukawsaw Gronniosaw, Phillis Wheatley, and John Marrant were funded by proslavery British evangelicals associated with Selina Hastings, the Countess of Huntingdon. As she was publishing Black authors, Huntingdon also invested huge sums in the African slave trade and enslaved dozens of people on her plantation in Georgia. I argue that Huntingdon’s patronage helps explain troubling opinions about slavery voiced by the writers she promoted, most notoriously those in Wheatley’s “On Being Brought from Africa to America.” The chapter compares books like Wheatley’s with the writings of an unknown Black writer also associated with Huntingdon: the preacher David Margrett. Huntingdon funded Margrett on a missionary trip to Georgia but fired him after he gave a radical antislavery sermon declaring that “God will deliver his own people from slavery.” Margrett’s sermon survives only in private letters written by white people who sought to silence him. Comparing Margrett’s unpublished sermon with the books Huntingdon promoted illuminates the pressures Black authors strategically faced when they argued for their humanity in a medium controlled by white patrons.
Petty corruption breaks the rules, grand corruption writes the rules, cronyism basks in virtue. 1980s globalisation incited a corruption eruption in the periphery which spilled over back into the core in the 1990s. The United States narrowed its notion of corruption, which now engulfs politics, finance, law enforcement, and the Supreme Court. In Europe, an integrity revolution in the nineteenth century established impartial governance. It began under the ancien régime, and replaced patronage with expertise. Its ideal type of a Weberian bureaucracy, an elite corps of expert and honest administrators, was established in north-western Europe by 1870, and underpinned the capacity for war and constructive state action. Its efficiency was based on expert, impartial, and trustworthy competence. Official elites came into conflict with the forces of modernity, with democracy and the market. Their success led to over-extension, and the dilution of bureaucracy exposed it to its enemies.
Chapter 4 concentrates on history plays in collection because the act of gathering and publishing texts as a bound group involves an assessment of ‘kinds’ and makes a statement about genre. It proposes that, beyond two-part plays, the first collections of commercial drama to prioritize ‘history’ as part of their design were the so-called Pavier quartos (a planned collection of ten plays published in 1619), and Shakespeare’s First Folio in 1623. The chapter argues that the 1619 collection underscores the fluidity and inclusivity of history as a genre, incorporates monarchical histories alongside citizen and legendary histories, and resembles early modern Sammelbände in its construction. Shakespeare’s Folio, in contrast, singularizes and solidifies its ‘Histories’ by creating a dramatic category that is based exclusively on English monarchical history after the Conquest. This chapter offers a new perspective on these much-discussed publication ventures: it concentrates on the statements they make about history, assesses who was responsible for their design, and shows how their presentation promotes competing notions of ‘history’ and ideas of timeliness and timelessness.
Chapter 2 argues that Andrew Wise’s editions of Richard II, Richard III, 1 Henry IV, and 2 Henry IV established Shakespeare’s early print reputation as a dramatist of English monarchical history. The chapter begins by driving a wedge between stage and print patterns during the late sixteenth century, demonstrating that Shakespeare’s English histories were unrepresentative of the historical subjects that were popular on the London stages. It proposes that Wise’s selection and presentation strategies were contingent on three main factors: the book trade’s interest in English monarchical history and its application to Elizabethan politics; the connection of Wise to Shakespeare’s company and George Carey’s patronized writers, which can be seen as a flexible model of textual patronage that eschews a direct link between patron and stationer; and the growing marketability of Shakespeare’s name. The result is an assessment of Shakespeare’s histories and ideas of genre that reveals the intersection of multiple agendas: it draws attention to the book trade as a collaborative system of exchange that frustrates efforts at singularizing agency and notions of genre.
In a paper on the north aisle of St James, Biddenham, Bedfordshire, published in The Antiquaries Journal in 2015, in a related paper on the west tower of Bolney, West Sussex, and in a recent book, Church Building and Society in the Later Middle Ages, Gabriel Byng has questioned the typicality of church-rebuilding single-handedly directed and financed by wealthy individuals such as the Sussex knight Sir William de Etchingham. In a close study of Bolney and Biddenham, Byng argues instead that church-rebuilding ‘was run and financed by comparatively wealthy groups of peasants or townsfolk’. The case rests on Byng’s assessment of unusual surviving sources, a series of informal accounts for Bolney and a draft contract for Biddenham. This paper offers a rather different reading, and questions Byng’s claim. The decisive role at both was played by the lords, John Bolney at Bolney, and Sir William Butler at Biddenham.
Catullus’ collection contains several clear echoes of the work of two contemporary Epicurean poets, Lucretius and Philodemus. Indeed, several of the neoteric poet’s central themes (the attractions of otium and disengagement from public life; patronage by members of the high elite and its pitfalls; dissatisfaction with the mos maiorum) bring him potentially into close alignment with Epicurean ideals. In this chapter, however, I argue that, on closer consideration, Catullus’ intertextual engagement with his two contemporaries points rather to a self-consciously antagonistic stance towards Epicurean ethics. Catullus’ attack on ‘Socration’ in Poem 47, combined with parodic echoes of Philodemus’ epigrams in Poems 13 and 43, bears comparison with Cicero’s deployment of anti-Epicurean clichés in the In Pisonem; similarly, Philodemean and Lucretian echoes underline a striking divergence both from Epicurean ideals of friendship and from the rejection of romantic love explicit in Lucretius and arguably implicit in Philodemus’ Xanthippe cycle.
Studies of electoral clientelism—the contingent exchange of material benefits for electoral support—frequently presume the presence of strong parties. Parties facilitate monitoring and enforcement of vote buying and allow brokers to identify core voters for turnout buying. Where money fuels campaigns but elections center around candidates, not parties, how do candidates pitch electoral handouts? The authors analyze candidates’ distribution of cash during an Indonesian election. Drawing upon varied data, including surveys of voters and brokers, candidates’ cash-distribution lists, and focus-group discussions, they find heavy spending but little evidence of vote buying or turnout buying. Instead, candidates buy brokers. With little loyalty or party brand to draw on, candidates seek to establish credibility with well-networked brokers, who then protect their turf with token payments for their own presumed bloc of voters. The authors find little evidence of monitoring of either voter or broker behavior, which is consistent with their argument that these payments are noncontingent.
In this article, I examine how the apocryphal Acts of John depicts wealthy Christian converts as part of the “Christianization” of Ephesus. I note how the Acts of John uses its portrayal of leading citizens not only to critique, but to preserve and adapt prevailing expectations surrounding Greco-Roman cultic patronage. My analysis comprises two parts. In the first part, I discuss the ways in which the Acts of John undermines prevalent Greco-Roman practices of benefaction. I note that the Acts of John criticizes monetary offerings as part of cultic “exchanges,” and thus indirectly condemns the patronage of religious institutions by wealthy benefactors. Relatedly, the Acts of John’s portrait scene, most often analyzed for its witness to early Christian aniconism, challenges Greco-Roman patronage norms by questioning the propriety of dedicatory portraits. In the second part, I track the ways in which the Acts of John preserves and adapts prevailing modes of ancient benefaction. Specifically, the Acts of John positions domestic hospitality as the primary means by which wealthy converts ought to support the Christian mission. Taken together, my two-part examination establishes that the Acts of John both challenges and redirects prevailing practices of Greco-Roman patronage as part of a broader articulation of proper Christian piety.
This Element explores the papacy's engagement in authorial publishing in late antiquity and the Middle Ages. The opening discussion demonstrates that throughout the medieval period, papal involvement in the publication of new works was a phenomenon, which surged in the eleventh century. The efforts by four authors to use their papal connexions in the interests of publicity are examined as case studies. The first two are St Jerome and Arator, late antique writers who became highly influential partly due to their declaration that their literary projects enjoyed papal sanction. Appreciation of their publication strategies sets the scene for a comparison with two eleventh-century authors, Fulcoius of Beauvais and St Anselm. This Element argues that papal involvement in publication constituted a powerful promotional technique. It is a hermeneutic that brings insights into both the aspirations and concerns of medieval authors. This title is also available as Open Access on Cambridge Core.
This article examines the first-century c.e.Laus Pisonis, an anonymous panegyric for a certain Piso that lays particular emphasis on his skill at lyre-playing, ball games and the board game, the ludus latrunculorum (155–210). Whereas this focus has often been a cause of consternation among critics, this article argues that play is a crucial element of the poem's poetic and political operations. The first section shows that the poem employs images of poetic maturity and of temporality in order to justify a light or ludic topic for an allegedly young poet. The second section identifies a hitherto unobserved telestich (M-O-R-A) in the passage describing the ludus latrunculorum and argues that this letter game defines a positive period of play within the poem. The third section further demonstrates that this letter game is aimed specifically at the patron Piso as he is represented within the poem. That is, the poet parallels Piso's potential to uncover the telestich in the text and his ability to uncover the poet's hidden talent. The concluding fourth section explores the wider impact of this reinterpretation of the Laus Pisonis for the literary history of the Early Principate. It proposes that the poem's playfulness should not be seen as reflecting the progressive disempowerment of the political elite. Rather, the poem is an early case of Roman political discourse encroaching on the value of the trivial and the boundaries of otium. The Laus Pisonis makes play political.
Chapter 10 continues the theme of royal inaugurations as a process, covering the events immediately following on from a ruler’s enthronement to his first few years on the throne. Having been awarded a royal title did not inure a king against challenges and rivals. It normally took about 3–4 years before a ruler’s grip on power was secure. Successful rulers were those who overcame challenges during these years, while those who failed might either be disposed or replaced, or struggle to assert their authority fully across the realm. Key to success was a new king’s ability to demonstrate that he abided by the normative framework of royal power. He ruled for the common good, not for private gain. Yet what did this mean in practice? How could he win over those opposed to his kingship, erstwhile competitors and disappointed nobles? What was the role of the his subjects during these first few years? How could they seek to shape the governance of the realm? What was the role of force, and how did it relate to the doing of justice? How could generosity be balanced with equity? How did rulers deal with acts of disruption and dispute?
This chapter discusses how the Mexican public administration is being affected by a backsliding process triggered by the current government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador. It argues that Mexico is experiencing a case of what could labelled “doublespeak populism,” which is transforming in profound ways the country’s public administration. López Obrador’s agenda has been embedded in terms and phrases traditionally associated with the political left, but his policy measures actually reflect topics closer to the right. Moreover, these measures have been introduced whilst deliberately concealing their ultimate intentions and potential effects. As a result, López Obrador’s reforms have further deteriorated bureaucratic institutions and public services, thus affecting the overall welfare and basic rights of the people they are supposed to help. The chapter draws on policy proposals, presidential speeches, analyses from academics and policy experts, and news reports to assess the broader administrative consequences of López Obrador’s doublespeak populism on Mexico’s democratic governance.
Based on a case study on Germany in the first half of the twentieth century, this chapter addresses the administrative dimension of liberal-democratic backsliding by examining the role the state bureaucracy played in the process of system transformation from the Weimar Republic to the Nazi regime. It shows how the state bureaucracy in Germany was approached and transformed by illiberal politicians in the late Weimar Republic and under Hitler. Despite the existence of a professional Weberian bureaucracy with strong regulative barriers against politicization in the Weimar Republic, the civil service did not function as a safeguard of the democratic system. Instead, many civil servants welcomed the roll-back of democratic principles, which facilitated the radical transformation and politicization of the bureaucracy in a short time. This case study underlines the significance of institutionalizing democratic values in the civil service in processes of democratization in order to strengthen its resilience to attempts of eroding liberal democratic institutions.
Despite the proliferation of literature on large-scale land acquisitions (LSLA) in Africa, few empirical studies exist on how patronage networks combine with socio-cultural stratification to determine the livelihood outcomes for African agrarian-based communities. This article draws from ethnographic research on Cameroon to contribute to bridging this gap. We argue that lineage and patronage considerations intersect to determine beneficiaries and losers during LSLA. Second, we show that LSLA tend to re-entrench existing inequalities in power relations that exist within communities in favour of people with traceable ancestral lineage. Concomitantly, non-indigenous groups especially migrants, bear the brunt of exclusion and are unfortunately exposed to severe livelihood stresses due to their inability to leverage patronage networks and political power to defend their interests. We submit that empirical examination of the impacts of land acquisitions should consider the centrality of power and patronage networks between indigenes and non-indigenes, and how this socio-cultural dichotomy restricts and/or mediates land acquisition outcomes in Cameroon.
“The prevailing force that generates and sustains illiberal power is not tied to specific social and economic conditions. In illiberal democracies, the political shapes society by creating and reinforcing specific mindsets and dependencies. The political and resulting social power of the plebiscitarian leader originates from a system of personal dependencies and from the belief that the leader is indispensable in the permanent chaos. The leader’s political power enables him to set the rules of the game. Illiberal democracies are neopatrimonial regimes, but here personal rule exists hand in hand with a bureaucratic, formal rationalistic system. The ruler pretends not to be above the law, and his state and its officials act as authorized by law.
The plebiscitarian leader operates a patronage system and determines who gets what from the state, but the beneficiary may hold state resources as a prebenda only. With increased state control over social resources individuals become dependent of the state and the leader and autonomous organizations lose their autonomy. This is the material source of power of the leader that enables him to rule in a plebiscitarian democracy.”
The concluding chapter puts the book’s findings about the first year of the Syrian uprising in a broader context and restates the book’s contributions to the study of ethnic politics and violent intrastate conflict. It draws out the implications of the study for thinking about Syria in a state of civil war (2012–18) and its future governance and reconstruction (post-2018). It highlights the role of local network ties and connections to outside authorities in rebel governance, then discusses the ways in which state–society linkages might be reconstructed or made anew and their role in governing Syria in the future.
This chapter presents the book’s research question, central argument, and structure. It begins with an empirical puzzle that challenges the conventional wisdom of how violent conflict on ethnic lines breaks out. Residents of the Syrian city of Dayr al-Zur fit the profile of an “ethnically excluded” population – Sunni Arabs who get few public goods from the state – but they did not rise up uniformly against the regime. Rather, a patchwork of linkages between the state and local leaders made mobilization uneven and generated state–society negotiation across the Sunni–ʿAlawi ethnic boundary. This puzzle motivates the book’s broader question: what “ethnicizes” revolutionary situations faced by ethnically dominated regimes? The chapter then characterizes the diverse forms of contention found in the Syrian uprising and demonstrates that initial contestation was primarily focused at the sub- and supra-ethnic levels, only later coming to revolve around ethnic claims. It then previews the mechanisms pushing challenger–incumbent interaction toward ethnic violence and discusses the research design and methods employed in the book.