Numbers and Nationhood: Writing Statistics in Nineteenth-Century Italy

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Juni 2002



Numbers and Nationhood explores the rise of statistics as a mode of representation in Italian society during the nineteenth century. Silvana Patriarca examines the ideologies that informed numerical productions, and the role that statistics played in generating a national image of Italy that nevertheless accentuated its internal territorial divisions. This innovative study provides a fresh reading of the historiography of Risorgimento Italy, bringing issues of science, ideology and representation to the fore.


1. Introduction: the history of statistics between state making and objectifications; 2. A science for 'civilized' countries: practitioners, audiences and theories of statistics, 1820s-50s; 3. Statistical description: between epistemology and politics; 4. Making public numbers: official statistics in the pre-unification monarchies; 5. Building the nation's body: 'patriotic statistics' representation of Italy; 6. The identity of the Italians, or the ambiguities of moral statistics; 7. Representing the new nation (1861-71); 8. A nation of Communes in a Europe of nationalities: the statistical Congress of Florence; Epilogue: measurable and unmeasurable things.


'... an important contribution to the broader task of examining the interplay of culture and politics that shaped the national question during the Risorgimento'. Modern Italy ' ... fascinating ... offers remarkably effective keys for rereading the interplay of science, culture and politics in the formation of bourgeois public opinion in Italy in the age of Unification. ... brilliant and fascinating reconstruction of the subtexts of debates to which cultural and intellectual historians of the Risorgimento have previously paid little attention ... combines thoughtful new research and concepts to develop an original, coherent and stimulating thesis from which all historians on nineteenth-century Italy will have much to learn'. Journal of Modern Italian Studies ' ... this important and intelligent book ... is a vital contribution to the historiography of Italian nationalism ... suggests ways in which the new cultural history and the more traditional social and political history can complement and enrich each other. In this respect, its importance also transcends the boundaries of the Italian peninsula.' Economic History Review
EAN: 9780521522601
ISBN: 0521522609
Untertitel: 'Cambridge Studies in Italian H'. Revised. Sprache: Englisch.
Erscheinungsdatum: Juni 2002
Seitenanzahl: 296 Seiten
Format: kartoniert
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