Faking it. Forgery and Fabrication in Late Medieval and Early Modern Culture
What is real and what is fake? And why does it matter? As soon as objects, texts and utterances (be they pragmatic or artistic) become imbued with a sense of authority or authenticity, there is a potential to produce other objects, texts and utterances which mimic and attempt to siphon off that authority and authenticity.
In late medieval and early modern European culture (1400–1750), this potential was realized in new and unprecedented ways. Social, technological, and intellectual developments forever altered many activities which fall under the remit of forgery and fabrication, spurring lively debate about truth and falsity. The printing press transformed the production, distribution and marketing of texts and images. Heightened interest in classical antiquity changed how scholars interacted with and assigned value to artefacts originating in past cultures. Legal developments altered how artworks and documents were policed, and how authorship and authenticity were instantiated.
The interdisciplinary conference Faking it. Forgery and Fabrication in Late Medieval and Early Modern Culture, held in Gothenburg from the 15th to the 17th of August 2019, seeks to explore the many and varying ways in which legitimate forms of production spawned illegitimate ones in late medieval and early modern culture. The conference is … READ MORE