Workshop 1: Programme

'Exoticizing Vesuvius'? The historical and intellectual formation of Neapolitan historiography, 12 January 2009 (Cambridge)

Registration is closed for The Historical andIntellectual Formation of Neapolitan Historiography. Information about upcoming workshops is available via the Exoticizing Vesuvius? homepage

This workshop will critically trace the historical and intellectual formations of Naples' historiography as a form of 'topography'. Thus this workshop examines the scholarly currents that have worked to marginalize Naples across the disciplines, especially in history, history of art, architectural history, and Italian Studies. We critically consider both those modes by which Naples has been represented as peripheral, or as subordinate to 'centres' elsewhere in Italy (eg Florence, Rome, Venice), and the modes whereby Naples' topography has been crudely characterized, elegantly exoticized, or flatly overlooked in historical, visual and literary representations and scholarship. Concomitantly we consider the lack of intellectual porosity that has tended to mark Neapolitan studies and examine its principal causes and most significant consequences. Thus this workshop is designed to explore critically the principal historiographical patterns and models which have shaped scholarship across the disciplines (especially Neapolitan history, art and architectural history, literature studies, religious history) since Benedetto Croce, with critical reference to other particularly formative scholars, including Giuseppe Galasso, Roberto Pane and Anthony Blunt. We are eager to resist simply reinstating familiar paradigms of the south as 'failure' in relation to 'modernity' and the nation state. Indeed, one of the central issues is how can the perils of periodization and history as linear be resisted?

The programme of papers is complete, no further speaker slots are available.


9.30-10.00: Registration

10.00: Introduction: Helen Hills and Melissa Calaresu

Chair: John Robertson (University of Oxford)

10.15-10.30: Anna Maria Rao (University of Naples 'Federico II'): Reflections on pre-circulated paper: Lost opportunities in the history of Naples

10.30 -10.45: Marta Petrusewicz (City University of New York: Hunter College and the Graduate Center): Reflections on pre-circulated paper: Were the peripheries really so monotonous?: Rural modernizers in Two Sicilies, 1815-1860

10.45-11.15: Discussion

11.15-11.45: Coffee

Chair: David Abulafia (University of Cambridge)

11.45-12.00: Peter Burke (University of Cambridge): Reflections on pre-circulated paper: 'Barons in the city': Reflections on culture and society in early modern Naples

12.00-12.15: John Marino (University of California at San Diego): Reflections on pre-circulated paper: Myths of Modernity and the Myth of the City: When the Historiography of Pre-modern Italy Goes South

12.15-12.45: Discussion

12.45-2.00 Lunch

Chair: Lucy Riall (Birkbeck College, University of London)

2.00-2.15: Girolamo Imbruglia (Istituto Universitario Orientale, Naples): Reflections on pre-circulated paper: Enlightenment according to Benedetto Croce

2.15-2.30: John Davis (University of Connecticut): Reflections on pre-circulated paper: Napoli Novecento: unfinished histories

2.30-3.00: Discussion

3.00-3.30 Tea

3.30-4.30: Discussion and reflections on the work of the day led by Lucy Riall and John Robertson.