The welfare of migrants: institutions, families and belongings in Italy (sixteenth to nineteenth centuries).(WELMIG project)

Postdoctoral project supervised by Andrea Caracausi (Dec 2022 - Dec 2025)

Beatrice Zucca Micheletto

WELMIG investigates the relationship between mobility and the welfare system in early modern and modern pre-unitarian Italy, spanning from the middle of the sixteenth century to the middle of the nineteenth century. WELMIG focuses on a range of welfare institutions (charity institutions, hospitals, workhouses, welfare agencies) and exploits their historical archives across the Italian peninsula. It will collect information on the socio-economic profile of individuals and families who received assistance and/or were committed in the ordinary activities of the welfare institutions. It will adopt an intersectional approach, paying attention to gender, age, class, religion and ethnicity of recipients and of the people who revolved around these institutions. At the same time it will analyze how the hosting societies of the past organised and managed the access to local resources for newcomers and migrants, the implementation of norms and laws and the coherence (or not) between norms and practices.

WELMIG links the history of the welfare institutions to the mobility turn in social science and dialogues with a range of historiographical approaches – gender history, social history, labour history, family history. It will promote debate and exchange of ideas on the topic for academic and non-academic public with the support of the MobiLab, and with the collaboration of the University of Cambridge (Campop) and the international network WeMove (CA19112).