CfP: The First World War in Italy and Beyond: History, Legacy and Memory (1918–2018)

30 November – 1 December 2018
Italian Institute of Culture, London

Annual Conference of the Association for the Study of Modern Italy

Download CfP: CFP – ASMI 2018

The conference will explore the history, legacy and memory of the First World War in Italy from 1918 to 2018. As the War was one of the formative experiences of the modern Italian nation, the aim is to place the conflict in a longer chronological perspective and to highlight its lasting impact from a range of viewpoints. Drawing on recent innovations in the historiography, the conference will shift focus away from the battlefields towards hitherto neglected areas of study, including the experience of civilians and everyday life, the transition from war to peace, and the post-war climate and reconstruction. It will shed light on how the memory of WWI shaped Italy’s national identity and served political ends during the Fascist period and after the Second World War. The intention is also to escape the confines of national historiography by placing Italy in comparative and transnational contexts. Thus, the centenary presents an opportunity to look with fresh eyes at the mark left by the War on the history, politics and society of Italy.

We welcome proposals from scholars working in a variety of disciplines including history, literature, film, politics, anthropology, art, economics, sociology and geography.

Panels might include, but are not limited to:
• The immediate aftermath of WW1 (1918–1922) and the rise of social conflict, political violence and Fascism
• The creation of the League of Nations and the emergence of pacifism, humanitarianism and internationalism
• The experience of veterans in the post-war period
• New historiographical approaches to the study of Italy and WW1
• Global, transnational and comparative perspectives
• Local, regional and national experiences
• Gender, both femininity and masculinity
• Family and societal ties
• Changes to ideas of nationhood, democracy, citizenship and community after WW1
• The legacy of WWI under Fascism
• Parallels between the aftermath of WW1 and the aftermath of WW2
• The material heritage of the War: monuments, memorials and cemeteries
• Italy’s commemorations of the centenary in national or transnational contexts

The organizers welcome proposals for individual papers and for panels composed of 3 speakers. They reserve the right to break up and re-structure proposed panels.

Confirmed keynote speakers:
Prof. Gunda Barth-Scalmani (University of Innsbruck)
Author of numerous works on Italian-Austrian relations and the experiences of women during WWI, including Ein Krieg – Zwei Schützengräben, Österreich – Italien und der Erste Weltkrieg in den Dolomiten 1915–1918 (Bozen 2005) and Militärische und zivile Kriegserfahrungen 1914–1918 (Innsbruck, 2010).

Dr. Marco Mondini (University of Padua/Fondazione Bruno Kessler, Trento)
Author of numerous bestselling books on Italy and WW1, including most recently Il Capo. La Grande Guerra del generale Luigi Cadorna (Il Mulino 2017) and La guerra italiana. Partire, raccontare, tornare 1914-18 (Il Mulino 2014). He is a frequent contributor to programmes on Rai Storia, e.g. http://www.raistoria.rai.it/articoli/cadorna-il-capo/32462/default.aspx

Please send an abstract of max. 250 words and a short biography to: asmi.conference1918@gmail.com
Abstracts can be both in English and in Italian.
The closing date for receipt of abstracts is 1 June 2018

Accepted speakers will be required to join ASMI, which includes subscription to the journal Modern Italy.

Organising Committee: Selena Daly (University College Dublin), Carlotta Ferrara degli Uberti (University College London), Hannah Malone (Freie Universität Berlin), Martina Salvante (University of Warwick)

CfS: Painting, Memory and the Great War

Call for Submissions for a volume on ‘Painting, Memory and the Great War’, edited by Margaret Hutchinson and Steven Trout.

Over the past century, paintings of the Great War have played an important role in shaping and expressing public memory of the conflict. Indeed, many canvases—think, for example, of the Panthéon de la Guerre or John Singer Sargent’s iconic Gassed—have enjoyed just as much cultural prominence as photographs or works of cinema. The Great War represents a “last hurrah” for painting as a significant form of cultural war remembrance. This volume will examine paintings as sites of memory, highlighting the dynamic exchange between artists and their patrons, both of whom were responsible for determining what was remembered in, and what was absent from, the
canvas.

This volume seeks to draw together essays addressing individual paintings from a range of belligerent nations, including (but not limited to) Austria-Hungary, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Russia, and the United States. Each chapter will focus on the history of a single work and its role in the construction, consolidation, or perpetuation of memory. The paintings themselves may come from a wide variety of genres and styles. We are open to essays that explore the complexity of works produced during the conflict or afterwards, whether by independent painters or by members of official wartime art programs or post-war commemoration projects.

The University of Alabama Press has agreed to consider this collection as part of its new book series War, Memory and Culture. Publication is contingent upon successful external review. Please submit an abstract of 300 words outlining your proposed chapter to Margaret Hutchison margaret.hutchison@anu.edu.au and Steven Trout strout@southalabama.edu by 1 March 2016. Essays of 7, 000 words inclusive of footnotes in current Chicago Style format are to be submitted no later than 30 November 2016. Inquiries are welcome.

Lecture: Futurism, Fascism, and the Art of War

Futurism, Fascism, and the Art of War
Michael Subialka, Powys Roberts Research Fellow in European Literature
St Hugh’s College, Oxford

29 April 2015, 5 pm, Taylor Institution Library, St Giles’, Oxford

The Italian entry into World War I was rooted in a complex mix of secret diplomacy, longstanding nationalist sentiments, and popular cultural provocation. One of the features of that mix is that it made for strange bedfellows and stranger combinations of beliefs even within single groups or movements. The Italian Futurists are no exception, and their years of provocation on behalf of intervention against Austria-Hungary (and in Africa) can be traced to a series of conflicting impulses that emerge out of the 19th century. In their thought, the basic irredentist cause of “completing” the Risorgimento’s unification of Italy is combined with the 19th-century discourse on vitalism, Darwinian visions of race theory and natural selection, and also an impulse toward the abstract, mysterious, and metaphysical, transposed from the realm of religion to human action and artistic creation. This blend of impulses makes the Futurist provocation emblematic both of the late 19th century and of the coming era of Fascism. It is in this light that we should approach the shift of alliances achieved by the Patto di Londra (Treaty of London), signed secretly 26 April 1915, nearly a month before Italy’s entry into the war.

All welcome. Lecture followed by Futurist book display and reception.

Poster: 2015-03-FuturismFascismAndTheArtOfWar-Poster-1