Fiona Greenland with Christine Mehring
The University of Chicago Press’s “By the Book” series, in partnership with the Seminary Co-op Bookstore, presents an event featuring Fiona Greenland, author of Ruling Culture: Art Police, Tomb Robbers, and the Rise of Cultural Power in Italy, in conversation with Christine Mehring, Mary L. Block Professor in the Department of Art History and the College at the University of Chicago and adjunct curator at the University’s Smart Museum.
For centuries, Italy was Europe’s artistic center, where foreign elites bought, sold, and plundered countless artworks and antiquities. Italy now asserts control over its cultural heritage through its famous military-police art protection unit, the Art Squad, and by waging legal battles against some of the world’s most important museums, turning heritage into patrimony capital—a powerful convergence of art, money, and politics.
In Ruling Culture, Greenland traces how Italy came to wield extensive legal authority, global power, and cultural influence. She takes a close look at the Art Squad and state archaeologists and at unauthorized excavators, thieves, and smugglers to present a multifaceted story of art crime, cultural diplomacy, and international power struggles.
Please use this link to register for the event.