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M. Cavarzere,  Historical culture and political reform in the Italian Enlightenment

M. Cavarzere, Historical culture and political reform in the Italian Enlightenment

Publié le par Université de Lausanne (Source : Emma Burridge)

Historical culture and political reform in the Italian Enlightenment

Marco Cavarzere
Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment, 2020
ISBN: 9781789622034, 352 pages, £65.00


During the eighteenth-century antiquarianism became a powerful instrument for fostering the political agenda of reformist monarchies and for shaping a modern public sphere. This book analyzes how Italian elites shared their opposite visions of political reforms through the instruments of historical erudition.

  • An innovative perspective on the history of modern scholarship.
  • The first comprehensive book on historical culture in eighteenth-century Italy.
  • A highly creative use of sources, from historical geography to dramas.
  • Presents a provocative and subtle argument that sheds new light on the history of antiquarian studies.
  • The book not only is based on a range of primary texts and archives, but also offers an impressively wide and deep reading of recent scholarship on the Italian eighteenth century.


Table of Contents

List of figures


I. Background

Chapter 1: A country under construction
Pushing Italy (and the world) aside
Nations and patrie
Languages of Italy

Chapter 2: The importance of being erudite
The Muratorian moment
Antiquarianism and political identities
Erudition and society

Chapter 3: Institutional settings
Public policies of communication
Aristocratic circles
Communication short circuits

II. Difficult transitions

Chapter 4: Naturalizing sovereignty: law and history
"The national king"
Conflicting kings
National laws
A century without Rome

Chapter 5: The land of Italian nations: space and history
Geography and politics
Chorographic debates
Antiquarian cartographies
Ritual geographies

Chapter 6: Historical representation: collective memory and history
Hard times for state historiography
New media: heroic genealogies
National history on stage

Conclusion: an unfinished transition



Marco Cavarzere PhD in history at the Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa, teaches early modern history at the Goethe-University of Frankfurt am Main.

The Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment series, previously known as SVEC (Studies on Voltaire and the Eighteenth Century), has published over 500 peer-reviewed scholarly volumes since 1955 as part of the Voltaire Foundation at the University of Oxford. International in focus, Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment volumes cover wide-ranging aspects of the eighteenth century and the Enlightenment, from gender studies to political theory, and from economics to visual arts and music, and are published in English or French.