I am very glad that "History and Memory" is now one of the specialization tracks of the VIU Globalization Program. We live in forgetful times, with little sense of the past and of the future.
History is more useful than ever to young generations from whatever discipline. It helps to put things in perspective. The essence of things can be spotted by trying to explain where they come from and how they became what they are.
The study of women and men in time and space, through the instruments of the social sciences and/or historical narrative, can give us hints about the world today. History as a discipline, with its methodologies, can help us live better, in an age of distrust and fake news. Its critique of the sources and call to go and see first hand documents: who said that, according to whom, which document, when? While memory has become a big thing: used to build individual and collective identity. It's an area of conflict, where we see quests to erase memory signs and monuments recalling a past, which is considered wrong or outdated. Associating memory and history we want to open a space of critical discussion. I'm looking forward to the exchanges between students and professors on the matter and in particular to discuss the pros and cons of the rising area of study on Public History.
The recruitment of professors who will teach at least a course in our Specialization Track in Fall 2021 was very successful. Colleagues from North America, Europe and Asia will teach courses in History and Memory, Memory Studies, Memory and Media, Representations of Time and Space in Western and Far Eastern Cultures, to mention a few.
Venice of course is an ideal stage for History and Memory studies, not only for the long history and for the many documents and sources, but also for the lively constantly reinterpreted memory, for example in the context of Italian nation building, in Fascism, Catholicism, Socialism and - more recently - Environmentalism. Also in Fall 2021, in occasion of the anniversary of the legendary foundation of Venice, we shall devote the co-curricular to meet local institutions and discuss the city. Remembering its fabled origins, an act of memory, will be the frame of common endeavours and program enrichment.
Scientific Director of the Globalization Program
Luca Pes, Ph.D. in Italian Studies, is the Vice Dean and Director of the Globalization Program at VIU, where he has taught every semester since the beginning of academic activities in 1997. He is also the scientific coordinator of the One Theme Project at Global Governance, Tor Vergata, Rome and was Professor of Modern and Contemporary History at the San Raffaele University in Milan. Prof. Pes has taught Urban and Contemporary History at Iuav and Contemporary History at Ca' Foscari, while being recognized Adjunct Associate Professor of European Studies at Duke (2011-2016). He published mostly on Venetian 19th-21st Century Cultural and Social History, on the Methodology of Local and Urban History and of History of the Present. His research and teaching areas include Teaching in Multicultural and Multidisciplinary contexts, Cinema and History, Italian Society, Diaries and Historiography, the difficult transition of Venice from 20th to 21st Century.