97946 - States, Empires, Nations

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

In order to launch a reflection enabling us to present history as an instrument for problematization, some skills and knowledge are to be acquired:

1. Understanding of the nature and quality of sources

2. Capacity of analysing texts and reading sources critically

3. Contextualising the texts

4. Perception of chronology

5. Knowledge of the events necessary to contextualisation

6. Awareness of the historiographical debate within the analysis is to be placed

Course contents

All classes will take place from 30 september 2022 to 19 December 2022 and will be held every Friday from 3 pm to 5 pm at Department of Biological Science, via Francesco Selmi 3.

“History is a shared commonwealth. The knowledge of is a principle of democracy and equality between citizens. It is a critical, inhomogeneous knowledge, which refuses conformism and thrives in dialogue. Historians have their own political opinions but have to submits them to the evidence of documents and debate, comparing them to others’ ideas and committing to their dissemination.” (Giardina, Camilleri, Segre, Appello. La storia è un bene comune). Above all, history is not merely just one discipline amongst many, which explains the meaning of this project, whose intention is to introduce history in those courses that do not provide it in their curricula, as a way to understand the present, the world we live in, by critically comparing it to our past. It is necessary to be aware that all subjects taught in university are rooted, without exception, in a historical flow without which they would no doubt still be able to allow students the acquisition of competence in the field, but not to enable the latter to acquire a critical understanding of the transformation of knowledge and the societies that express it. It is not always clear to all that history has nothing to do with an antiquarian approach to the past, with the learning of by now bygone events, but it is directly linked to understanding the present, to building a mindful citizenship, to acquiring a critical knowledge, a training ground to ‘practice’ dealing with the complexity of social and political dynamics otherwise destined to merely shoot before our eyes like mysterious meteors. Further to this point, the strengthening of social and civic competences, which are typical of historical studies, would represent the indispensable, and furthermore winning element of transversality across all specialist fields, within a formative itinerary aiming at both a high professionalization and its cognizant practice.

Structure of the course:

30 settembre


Sulla storia delle città greche: guerre, tradizioni culturali ed emozioni politiche

7 ottobre


Il ruolo delle donne nelle città degli uomini nella Roma antica

14 ottobre:


Diritti e rappresentazioni inattesi: le donne nei regni del primo Medioevo

21 ottobre


I trattati sulla guerra e le origini del diritto internazionale

28 ottobre:


L’uso politico del Medioevo nel discorso pubblico contemporaneo

4 novembre:


Un mondo di parole, immagini e suoni: i media e l'età moderna

11 novembre


Come si legittima una guerra: l'età moderna

18 novembre


L’antico regime: nascita postuma di una categoria interpretativa

25 novembre


Shoah e politiche della memoria

2 dicembre


La fine degli imperi asburgico, zarista e ottomano e la nascita del mondo contemporaneo (1917-1923)

16 dicembre


Crisi, legittimazione, consenso

19 dicembre


L'altra faccia del rischio: le emergenze naturali tra storia, istituzioni e politica



Texts: Marc Bloch, Apologia_della_storia o Mestiere di storico, Turin, Einaudi, 1981 (1950), pp.166.


Teaching methods


The course will be last 24 hours, equalling 3 CFU (Course Credits)

Assessment methods

interview centred on the text and on course work contents.

Type of assessment: Mark out of thirty.

Office hours

See the website of Fulvio Cammarano