I offer my heartfelt thanks to Leonardo Mercatanti and his family for their generous hospitality to me while I was in Sicily conducting research for this article. I also thank the editor of Geographical Review and the two anonymous referees for their spurs to innovation, clarity, and accuracy. All errors are mine alone.
BAROQUE DISRUPTIONS IN VAL DI NOTO, SICILY*
Version of Record online: 22 SEP 2010
© 2010 by the American Geographical Society of New York
Volume 100, Issue 4, pages 476–493, October 2010
How to Cite
PULEO, T. J. (2010), BAROQUE DISRUPTIONS IN VAL DI NOTO, SICILY. Geographical Review, 100: 476–493. doi: 10.1111/j.1931-0846.2010.00054.x
- Issue online: 22 SEP 2010
- Version of Record online: 22 SEP 2010
Two earthquakes that struck Sicily nearly three centuries apart provide the basis for an interpretation of subsequent events. After the 1693 earthquake, local inhabitants rebuilt their towns in a version of baroque architecture that is unique to the region. After the 1990 quake, their descendants mounted a campaign to restore the crumbling landscapes and then, years later, to unite in opposition against an oil company that threatened the newly restored sites. Michel Serres's theory of the “parasite” informs a reading of the earthquakes and the events that followed them as agents that disrupted the flow of human-environment relationships and produced hybridized landscapes and political alliances. In this way the Sicilian baroque is both a style of architecture and a mode of social and political mobilization.