The Material Culture of the Crusades

  • Maria Georgopoulou
Part of the Palgrave Advances book series (PAD)


The term ‘material culture’ defies the well established categories of art history and archaeology. Institutionally the term and the field of study that it has generated since the 1980s imply connections with anthropology, archaeology, the history of collecting and museums, and an interdisciplinary approach.1 Within the strict parameters of the term, material culture stands as a counterpart to art as it studies the products of the industrial arts; it is interested on the banal and the quotidian as opposed to High Art. Rather than thinking about the hand of a master, the study of material culture begs for understanding of the organization of the so-called industrial arts, the collective lives of craftsmen, the modes of production and the ways in which the artefacts reached the market and the home. In short, material culture deals with commodities rather than Art.


Material Culture Thirteenth Century British Library Muslim State Holy Site 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2005

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  • Maria Georgopoulou

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