Simona Cerutti

Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales

Archaeology of rights: petitions and mercy in early modern societies

2017-2018: Spring

Simona Cerutti is currently Directrice d’Etudes à l’Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris. She was co-director (together with Carlo Ginzburg and Giovanni Levi) of the book series Microstorie (Einaudi, 1985-1990). In 1989 she became co-director of the journal Quaderni Storici, and in 2015 she became a member of the Research Community (WOG) Urban Agency at University of Antwerp, coordinated by Bert De Munck.

Her main interests concern social classifications and hierarchies in early modern societies, with particular attention to the culture of law in the language and in the categories of social actors. The social belonging of places and the claims of rights to local resources are at the heart of her most recent works. She is responsible for an international research group (Citoyenneté et propriété au nord et au sud de la Méditerranée, XVIe-XIXe siècles: 2016-2020), comprised of students engaged in a comparative project on “citizenship” both in northern and the southern regions of the Mediterranean. She is developing a reflection on the future of social history and the developments of micro-historical methods. Currently she is writing a book on petitions and communication with authorities in early modern Italian societies. 

Her publications include: La ville et les métiers, Naissance d'un langage corporatif (EHESS, 1990); Giustizia sommaria. Pratiche e ideali di giustizia in una società di Ancien Régime(Feltrinelli, 2003); Etrangers. Etude d’une condition d’incertitude dans une société d’Ancien Régime (Bayard, 2012); “Who is below? E. P. Thompson, historien des sociétés modernes: une relecture” (2015); “Sources and Contextualizations: Comparing Eighteenth-Century North African and Western European Institutions” (with I. Grangaud, 2017).