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The VASA Front Page Project
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Paul Marotta

Holy Week in Enna, Sicily:
Ancient Traditions

Paul Marotta© Paul Marotta

At first glance any American would recoil at the image of what appears to be masses of people processing  in the night, adorned with pointed cone-shaped  hoods and white cloths covering their faces with cut-out eyeholes. Any reminiscences of the Klan and the horror they inflicted on black Americans is fraught with terror and evil-meaning intent. Scholars believe that in the years immediately following the Civil War as many as 10,000 blacks were lynched and in the intervening years untold others were terrorized and murdered. It is also thought that the Paris trained costume designer for D.W. Griffith's The Birth of a Nation,  Clare West, may  have been influenced by the ancient traditions of Europe during Holy Week, specifically the Spanish tradition dating from the 15th century of donning robes and hoods during the Easter week processions.

In Enna, this tradition continues today as the many religious confraternities turn out for a day long solemn procession throughout the city--Enna was at one point under Spanish domination. In fact the millennia has seen countless periods of domination by one country or another in Sicily. Today, in utter humility, this tradition continues as hundreds of extremely pious members of the city's various churches don elaborate robes, hoods and gloves, adorned with some of the elaborate beautifully crocheted lace Sicily is known for around the world, which denote their particular confraternity.

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Paul Marotta© Paul Marotta

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About Paul Marotta

Based in Arlington, MA, (USA) Paul specialize in entertainment and news coverage, event coverage, theater, dance and music performance.   He have two decades of management communications experience, including Director of Public Relations at New England Conservatory, Lincoln Center Great Performers, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, WGBH/NOVA, Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts and as Executive Director of Public Relations at WHYY/Philadelphia.


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The VASA Front Page Project
presents the work of a photographer,
video or sound artist for one month.

Front Page Archive 2017  
Rui Pedro Chagas (Portugal) Natalya Reznik (Germany)
Stephen Perloff (USA) Stefania Zorzi (Italy)
Noemi Veberič Levovnik (Slovenia) Igor Manko (Ukraine)
Paul Marotta (USA)  
Front Page Archive 2015-16  
Carla Della Beffa (Italy) FAXEN (Austria)
Michael Mastrototaro (Austria) Eva Petric (Slovenia)
Paula Scamparini (Brazil) Austin Irving (USA)
Misha Pedan (Ukraine) Masa Lancner (Slovenia)
Klaus Pamminger (Austria) Brigitte Konyen (Austria)
Lara Ciarabellini (Italy) Michael Amrose (USA)
Nikola Mihov (Bulgaria) Victor Sokolov (Ukraine)
Dennis Church (USA) Jennifer Schlesinger (USA)
Karen Brett (UK) Beth Moon (USA)
Julia Polunina-But (Ukraine) Joanna Epstein (Spain)
Alexandra Bočková (Czech Repub) Fadi Amraish (Palestine)
Ani Zur (Ukraine) Paul Genin (USA)


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