Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Of course, if you talk to a medieval historian, they'll insist there was NO Renaissance at all, that the entire concept is flawed. But then I'm a 20th century historian, so I'm more willing to speak in those terms.

You're right that monasticism was one vector by which ancient knowledge was communicated to Europe in the High Middle Ages, as were the universities. Medieval Europe had lots of places where knowledge was kept and produced, but because of the organization of the society - intensely local and hierarchical - that didn't spread. What I see the ETopia concept as trying is the protection of knowledge in a fixed space without the parochialism or hierarchy that characterized Medieval institutions.

I think you make an excellent point about the recurrence of this phenomenon - taking steps to protect knowledge and intellectual activity from a crisis of civilization. Better than a repeat of the sack of the Alexandria Library.

And of course, Christian monasticism was a response to the collapse of Roman civilization and its trade networks - Benedict of Nursia as an example.

Interesting point about modern universities. I wonder if the nuclear reactor is still there on the UC Berkeley campus, down in the basement of Etcheverry Hall, or if it has been disassembled...

And the world will live as one

by Montereyan (robert at calitics dot com) on Sun Sep 23rd, 2007 at 04:56:12 PM EST
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