On Tuesday, October 29th, Lindsey Row-Heyveld gave the second lecture in a three-part series of lectures on “Tattoos, Medievalism, and White Supremacy”. Lindsey is an Associate Professor of English at Luther College. The lecture is one of several in a series related to the exhibit, Tattoo: Identity Through Ink, on view at Vesterheim, the national Norwegian-American Museum and Heritage Center, through April 2020.
Lindsey teaches a Medieval literature class at Luther, and she often raised the question of how “Medievalism” plays a part in today’s society. Medievalism is a post-Medieval fantasy of the Medieval Period. Lindsey explains that the issue lies in the way that white nationalists use the symbols of the Medieval Period as a means for making the claim that they come from a powerful, superior race of people. They believe that Medieval Europe, along with the symbols that embody the time period, was a strictly white society. This is not the case at all and, in fact, it was actually an incredibly diverse region of the world, as seen through historical evidence and archaeological evidence.