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Renaissance as an Inspirational Era in Europe Essay

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Updated: Jun 3rd, 2021

Background

The Renaissance was one of the most outstanding and influential periods of European history. The development of crafts and trade, the rise of the role of cities, as well as political events in Western Europe in the XII and XIII centuries entailed significant changes in the whole way of life of European peoples. In the XVI century in Europe, the consolidation of small feudal principalities began, where large independent states emerged, such as England, France, and Spain. On the territory of modern Germany and Italy, several republics and principalities were formed.

In the process of merging small feudal possessions, the tendency of unified states to emancipate from the political power of the papacy was manifested. In the XIII century, The Roman Catholic Church was a vast pan-European unit over all lands. The popes actively interfered in the affairs of the administration of European nations, installed and crowned kings, and removed undesirable kings and even emperors (Kittler 112). Through its system of centralized spiritual governance, the Vatican pumped out huge funds from the countries of Western Europe.

Unregulated greed of the highest clergy of the Roman Catholic Church, and the luxurious life of the popes and cardinals caused spontaneous protests among believers and lower clergy. A movement of the so-called Reformation in church management arose in various European countries, a series of uprisings broke out against the dominance of popes, bishops, and monasteries due to their indulgences. At the beginning of the XV century in the Czech Republic began the famous uprising against the power of the Vatican under the leadership of Jan Hus – a prominent preacher, professor, and lecturer of Prague University.

In an atmosphere of general indignation by the greed of the Roman Catholic clergy in various European countries, doubts were openly expressed. The problem was not only about the legitimacy of the secular authorities of the popes but also about the justice of certain religious tenets and scholastic philosophy, which constitute the ideological foundations of Catholicism (Kittler 119). Dissatisfaction with religious scholasticism, the search for new ways to solve ideological issues have significantly revived the mental life of Europe.

Inspiration

The period of the Renaissance was an inspiration and innovation time for numerous scientists, artists, and geographers. An interest in the writings of ancient Greek and Roman pagan philosophers and writers, whose books were forbidden by the church, arose in the educated environment of European society. In the rich Italian republics, such as Florence, Venice, Genoa, and Rome itself, circles of lovers of ancient literature were formed.

There were numerous lists of works of classical authors. Interest in the old models of literary creativity soon spread to the field of art, architecture, and philosophy (Fliethmann 48). In Europe, the Renaissance of ancient literature, art, and architecture began, marking the beginning of a new time in social history. On the basis of the unsurpassed specimens of the literary works of ancient Greek and Roman authors, a new direction in oratory and literature, the so-called humanism emerged. All these changes shifted the social understanding and religious views.

One of the most inspirational and important achievements in the cultural history of the Renaissance was the invention of printing. Until the middle of the XV century, only handwritten books were used. They were addressed in a small number of lists and were very expensive. The introduction of printing made it possible to reproduce books in a large number of copies, which greatly contributed to the spread of knowledge.

In the Renaissance, great geographical discoveries were made, which inspired many people. At the end of the XIII century, Marco Polo traveled through the countries of Middle Asia to China and spent more than 20 years in Asian countries. The description of his journey had a significant influence on subsequent generations of geographers and travelers who were looking for a road to fabulous India.

The driving forces of the greatest scientific discoveries and achievements of the Renaissance were deep transformations in the character and scale of production. Already in the XV century, the process of transition from handicraft production methods, characteristic of the era of feudalism, to manufactory began (Fliethmann 49). This process, which marked the beginning of the capitalist production system, caused profound social and economic changes in the life of society.

All the inspirational economic, political, and social phenomena of the Renaissance led to the formation of a new bourgeois worldview that rejected the religious scholastics of past centuries. The emergence of elements of the modern worldview had a beneficial effect on the development of the natural sciences and, in particular, chemistry. One of the most significant representatives of the science and art of the Renaissance was the Italian Leonardo da, Vinci. Being a great mechanic, mathematician, design engineer, anatomist, and artist, Leonardo da Vinci was also interested in some chemistry issues. All these historical events are the results of the inspiration of people due to the Renaissance’s paradigm, which guided the society from religious autocracy towards enlightenment.

Conservation and Maintenance

One of the most prominent heritage of the Renaissance is museums. Therefore, it is highly important to preserve them in order to allow future generations to be inspired and enjoy these outstanding buildings, drawings, and statues. The museums mostly are not commercial organizations; therefore, the concept of complicity is especially important for it. It is critical to state that all groups of society were involved in its activities: government and local regulatory units, various groups of museum visitors, the scientific community, and collectors.

Most often, this concept is reflected in the creation of the Board of Trustees, which is the highest governing body of the museum (Geoghegan and Hess 463). Its tasks include the appointment of a museum director, the formulation of a development strategy, the approval of a budget, and the most substantial expenses, and it also in charge of the maintenance and preservation.

In addition, members of the Board of Trustees play an important role in lobbying the interests of the museum in government, and in the financial market. These tasks are generally similar to the functions of the supervisory board of a joint-stock company.

In several countries, such as Canada and Australia, the appointment of members of the Board of Trustees is entrusted to government bodies. US traditions place this responsibility directly on civil society, and the trustees themselves co-opt new members into their membership (Geoghegan and Hess 451). In any order of education of the board of trustees, and regardless of its personnel, the role of the museum’s top management in developing its preservation strategy cannot be underestimated.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the Renaissance was one of the most inspirational and innovative eras of the history of Europe. Numerous achievements in science and art were made. Therefore, it is necessary and important to preserve the heritage. The management of the museum, firstly, represents the professional point of view, and secondly, it prepares information and organizes the work of the maintenance. The changes in museum management have resulted in an expansion in the role of top management during strategic planning, and its most effective approach is the method of preservation.

Works Cited

Fliethmann, Axel. “The Body of Imagination and the Technology of Imagery in the Renaissance and in Modernity.” Thesis Eleven, vol. 130, no. 1, 2015, pp. 43–57.

Geoghegan, Hilary, and Alison Hess. “Object-Love at the Science Museum: Cultural Geographies of Museum Storerooms.” Cultural Geographies, vol. 22, no. 3, 2015, pp. 445–465.

Kittler, Juraj. “The Normative Role of Public Opinion in the Republican Experience of Renaissance Venice.” Communication and the Public, vol. 1, no. 1, 2016, pp. 110- 124.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "Renaissance as an Inspirational Era in Europe." June 3, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/renaissance-as-an-inspirational-era-in-europe/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) 'Renaissance as an Inspirational Era in Europe'. 3 June.

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