The imperial regime of Napoleon III during the Second Empire was a major turning point for Corsica, a highly symbolic peripheral region at the time. With more than 250 historical works and objects, the exhibition accurately reconstructs the emperor’s unique connection with the island. Between the hope of both social and economic progress and cultural resistance, we have a new perspective on this exciting page of history. On an island facing major economic difficulties, Napoleon I’s nephew embodied modernity. New laws were passed to ensure the development of the territory, through the creation of an agricultural company, courts, hospitals and even a Corsican counter, as well as an improvement in port capacity. This enhancement of the Corsican territory was accompanied by a romantic and picturesque image of the island attracting many tourists, but also the imperial family who set up their cult on the island, whilst many commemorative monuments transformed the landscape. But this process of invasion of the territory was subject to strong cultural resistance, the islanders’ way of life having been shaped for centuries by Italian tastes and language. Artists then decided to highlight the island’s history on the model of the Italian Storia patria, in order not to erase its cultural roots.
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See the teaser of the exhibition
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Palace of Governors
Place du Donjon – Citadel
20410 BASTIA Cedex