Possessions and reputation in 17th-century Rome
A graduate of La Sapienza Università di Roma, Renata Ago has always taught early modern history, first as a "ricercatore" at La Sapienza, then as a "professore associato" at the University of Cagliari and finally as a "professore ordinario" at La Sapienza.
During this time she has also been fellow or visiting professor in several institutions: in 1997/98 she was Jean Monnet fellow at the European University Institute in Florence; in 1990 and again in 2008 visiting professor at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris; in 2010 visiting professor at the Stanford University. She has been member of the editorial board of different academic journals like Memoria. Rivista di storia delle donne, Continuity & Change, Melanges de l'Ecole Française de Rome and Quaderni storici (of which she is currently the Director).
She participates in the Advisory Committee del "Accademia di San Luca Project," carried on by the CASVA (Center for Advanced Studies in the Visual Arts) in Washington, and from 2008 to 2010 she was a member of the "Conseil scientifique" and the "Conseil d'administration" of the Ecole Française de Rome.
Her scientific interests are specifically devoted to the social history of early modern times. Within this framework she has worked on rural communities and feudality in 16th to 18th centuries, on which she has written several essays and two books (Un feudo esemplare. Immobilismo padronale e astuzia contadina nel Lazio del '700, Fasano, Schena, 1988; and La feudalità nell'età moderna, Roma-Bari, Laterza, 1994).
She has also worked on family and gender history, and on the relationship between social exchanges, economic practices and institutions, on which she has edited two special issues of Quaderni storici (nn. 88 and 101) and written the book Economia barocca. Mercato e istituzioni nella Roma del Seicento, Roma, Donzelli, 2006.
More recently her interests have shifted to issues concerning consumption and material culture, on which she edited a special issue of Quaderni storici devoted to "cultural consumption," and published the book Il gusto delle cose. Una storia degli oggetti nella Roma del Seicento, Roma, Donzelli, 2006 (forthcoming in English translation for University of Chicago Press).
From 2009 to 2014, she is serving as the general scientific coordinator of a European project, "European Network for Baroque Cultural Heritage – ENBaCH," involving eight universities from six different European countries and funded by the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency of the European Commission.