The Participants

Nicholas Baker

Macquarie University (Sidney)

Nicholas Scott Baker’s research considers the multiple cultural, political, and economic connections between Florence (in particular) and the Iberian peninsula and empires. He has recently begun a new project that will produce a microhistory of globalization in the sixteenth century through analysis of the experiences of one family of Florentine merchants, and their extensive network of agents and partners, active in the emergent Atlantic economy between 1519 and late 1560s. He is particularly interested in exploring what globalization felt like, at its origin, for key players in its development.

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Alida Clemente

Università di Foggia

By questioning the influence of transnational commercial and cultural networks in shaping the urban panorama of new consumptions and styles, the research of Alida Clemente aims at analysing the characteristics of the Neapolitan market for Atlantic merchandises as it emerges from Neapolitan commercial letter-books of the 1740s-1750s.  This source allows us to trace the paths of merchandise, the changing links between Mediterranean and Atlantic markets, the way in which foreign merchants interacted, negotiated and perceived the local market and its main actors, as well as the roles played by Neapolitans in these networks.  

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Luca Codignola

University of Notre Dame – Saint Mary’s University (Halifax) – Université de Montréal

Luca Codignola’s research explores Roman Catholics in North American peripheries: from Newfoundland to Detroit, from Illinois to New Orleans, 1620s-1830s; the deeds, difficulties, and thoughts of priests, nuns, and missionaries whose life took place at a considerable distance from Québec and Baltimore; their relations with their hierarchical authorities, their multiethnic and ever-changing flock (including the natives), and the extent of their Romanization.

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Benedetta Crivelli

Università Bocconi (Milano)

The research of Benedetta Crivelli focuses on the circulation of goods and capitals across the maritime frontiers in the Mediterranean, with particular attention drawn to the interconnections between the Atlantic dynamics and the Eastern Mediterranean during the first modern age. The aim of the research is to reconstruct the networks of private credit and credit instruments that contributed to the rise of small-medium trading companies operating in the Mediterranean (and especially in Venice) and to explain how merchants organized trade circuits of exchange and distribution of goods, which were articulated within new spaces in order to create stable markets.

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Eva Dal Canto

Universität Bern

The PhD project of Eva Dal Canto focuses on Italian Capuchin missionaries in West Central Africa (Kongo, Angola, São Tomé) and Brazil as well as on papal nuncios based in Lisbon (17th-19th centuries). It examines their role as economic actors and as brokers of economically relevant knowledge and analyses their relations to Portuguese, African and Church authorities.

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Valentina Favarò

Università di Palermo

Valentina Favarò’s research focuses on the study of the border areas of the Spanish Monarchy in the Mediterranean and in Latin America. Moreover, her interest is turned to the study of transnational careers of ministers, military and religious in the different territories of the Spanish Monarchy, between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic area. In particular, the study of careers is functional to analyze the circulation of knowledge and models of administration between the Iberian Peninsula, the Italian one and the viceroyalties of Peru and New Spain.

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Silvia Marzagalli

Université Côte d’Azur (Nice)

Silvia Marzagalli’s current research deals with United States shipping in the Mediterranean during the Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars. She is also interested in consular information and consular networks. As P.I. of two programs founded by the Agence Nationales de la Recherche, she has produced an online database on shipping (ANR Navigocorpus) and is currently working on a project in digital humanities to query the database and visualize uncertain historical data though a dynamic interface (ANR PORTIC).

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James W. Nelson Novoa

University of Ottawa

The research of James Novoa deals with a group of Portuguese merchants who acted as intermediaries between Tuscany, Iberia and the Americas (esp. Brazil) during the Iberian Union of Spain and Portugal (1580-1640), providing access to knowledge about the New World and its products, commodities and naturalia.  He explores interactions between this group and the Medici, in particular during the reign of Grand Duke Ferdinand (1587-1609).  In order to understand their role between the Old and New World, their interactions within Tuscan society and their strategies for acquiring social capital, the project analyses the flow of goods which they brought to Tuscany from the Iberian and Atlantic worlds and that they exported to the Iberian Peninsula.

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Riccardo E. Rossi

Universität Bern

In his PhD project Riccardo Rossi analyses the trade and consumption of Atlantic commodities in the Italian-speaking Alpine valleys belonging to the Old Swiss Confederacy and the Three Leagues between 1650 and 1850. On the one hand, this study aims to offer a quantitative analysis of consumption patterns in these rural areas. On the other, it applies a micro-historical approach to explore the practices that changed as a result of the consumption and trade of foreign commodities.

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Giorgio Tosco

European University Institute (Florence)

Giorgio Tosco’s project analyses two seventeenth-century Italian states, the Grand Duchy of Tuscany and the Republic of Genoa, that tried to make their merchant marines enter trans-oceanic trade. The aim of this study is to see how the Tuscan and Genoese state structures interacted with some merchant communities (such as the Genoese and Tuscan traders in Portugal, or the Dutch-speaking ones in Livorno and Genoa), in order to shape trade policy.

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Robert Wells

Indiana University Southeast (New Albany)

In his dissertation “The White Cross and the Cardinal: The Knights of Malta between Mediterranean and Atlantic Worlds, 1555-1765” he focuses on the involvement of the Order of Malta (or Order of Saint John) in France’s American and North African colonies from the sixteenth to eighteenth centuries. He argues that the Order and a significant number of its French members form a link between European expansionism in the Atlantic and Mediterranean, two parts of the world that scholars (particularly of French history) still treat in isolation from each other.

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Roberto Zaugg

Universität Bern

Roberto Zaugg’s research explores how German and Italian-speaking territories were connected – through migration and trade – to the Americas and sub-Saharan Africa. He is working on the manuscript journal (1682-1696) of Johann Peter Oettinger, a seventeenth-century barber-surgeon who travelled on Dutch and Brandenburg slave ships, as well as on the trade and material cultures of coral beads between the Central Mediterranean and Atlantic Africa (15th-19th centuries).

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