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Notre Dame Cathedral and French Culture: The Meaning of a National Monument
September 14, 2019 at 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
The great fire in the famous Notre Dame Cathedral badly damaged a great Parisian monument, but it seemed to affect French national identity almost as profoundly as it damaged the church itself. How does the history of this iconic cathedral embody the complexity of French culture and national memory? This question shapes the themes of this seminar, which will explore the significance of Notre Dame in French architectural history, political culture, literary works and musical traditions. Drawing on diverse scholarly perspectives, speakers will provide wide-ranging interpretations of how the history of Notre Dame has contributed to French cultural and political life since the Middle Ages and explain why the great fire created such deep national grief in contemporary France.