Saturday, February 11, 2012

Bruzelius & Tronzo Reviewed

Caroline Bruzelius and William Tronzo's Medieval Naples: An Architectural and Urban History has just received a positive and thoughtful review by Thomas Granier of the Université Montpellier-III in the most recent online offerings of The Medieval Review. The review has many good things to say about this volume, praises the overall Documentary History of Naples and its mix of print and electronic resources but also raises some interesting questions about this mix and the autonomy of the individual volumes of the Medieval Naples sections.

While Bruzelius and Tronzo make it clear that their subject matter is the known, major monuments of the medieval city — and the overall historical contextualization of their development — Granier does present some caveats, among them the transition from late Antiquity to the later Middle Ages, and most especially the use of archival materials so well presented in Amedeo Feniello's latest work.

In fact, however, the complementary volume, Ronald G. Musto's Medieval Naples…Historical Texts, attempts squarely to address just these issues, but as Granier notes, in a separate and (so far) digital-only Kindle volume. The reviewer also generously notes that this is an ongoing project and that such materials will of course find their way together into the larger scheme of the project. It's criticism and advice both anticipated and well taken as we work our way through the complex issues of ongoing publication in the print and digital worlds.