Public lecture by John Davis



Italy’s Fragile Unity. The North & the South: Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow

A public lecture by John Davis, the Emiliana Pasca Noether Professor of Modern Italian History, University of Connecticut and 2017 UWA Fred Alexander Fellow.

Ever since Unification in the mid 19th century, the differences between the north and the south - the ‘Southern Question’ - have been a distinguishing feature of the modern Italian state. This discussion focused on the period since the Second World War and attempted to explain why in the last half century the disparities have increased and to examine the consequences, at a moment when for the first time popular secessionist movements similar to anti-party and anti-state movements elsewhere in Europe are spreading across southern Italy.

John Davis is the Emiliana Pasca Noether Professor of Modern Italian History at the University of Connecticut. He is the founding editor of the Journal of Modern Italian Studies. A John Simon Guggenheim Fellow, John Davis has received the Serena Medal of the British Academy and the International Galileo Galilei Prize in recognition of his contributions to modern Italy history. A Resident of the American Academy in Rome, a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (London) and a member of the academic board of the Istituto Italiano per gli Studi Filosofici, he has taught and lectured at numerous universities in Italy and Europe as well as the USA. He is general editor of the seven volume Oxford Short History of Italy (Oxford University Press 2000-2006) and has edited many collective volumes, including Italy and America 1943-4 (Napoli, Cittá del Sole 1997). His recent publications include Naples and Napoleon: Southern Italy in the Age of the European Revolutions (Oxford University Press 2006 ), which won the Howard and Helen Marraro Prize of the American Historical Association for the best book on Italy in any period (2007), the Premio Internazionale Sele d’Oro and the Literary Award of the International Napoleonic Society. His most recent book, The Jews of San Nicandro, was published by Yale University Press (October 2010) and has been published in Italian by La Giuntina (Firenze 2013). He is currently working on Italy’s ‘Southern Question’ from Unification to the present’ and on the liberal revolutions of the 1820s in Italy and Spain.

The Fred Alexander Fellowship is dedicated to the memory of Professor Fred Alexander (1899-1996), the founding Head of the History Discipline (then Department) at The University of Western Australia.