Nodi: Theories and methods

The development of the Department of Excellence Project “Mobility and the Humanities” started with a preliminary search for constants and affinities within the DiSSGeA scientific production, in its multiple disciplinary variations.

Indeed, the project aims not only to strengthen the dialogue between such different disciplinary perspectives, but also to concretely define a transversal theme that could validly constitute a basis for stimulating an interdisciplinary dialogue.

The theme of mobility – or rather, mobilities – has provided a potential common thematic platform allowing us to include increasingly more specific research dedicated to more circumscribed areas: mobility of people/bodies; mobility of objects/goods; mobility of knowledge/ideas; mobility of texts/books.

With regards to the operative delineation of more defined fields, the project also includes a line of research that provides a general framework, both from a theoretical and a methodological point of view.

In such logic, the “Theories and Methods” node aims to promote in-depth activities on theoretical and methodological issues, with a particular reference to the most innovative component of the project, namely the combination of mobility studies – more clearly present within the Social Sciences – and the Humanities.

Hence, the need for investigating the implications of this innovative formulation also from an epistemological point of view, and through a discussion of methodological possibilities already implemented or to be experimented.

Therefore, the purpose of the “Theories and Methods” node is to feed a broad theoretical vision on the topic (e.g. possible conceptions of mobility; development of innovative interpretations; terminological experimentations), on the one hand, and to think in a concrete, comparative and transversal way on methodologies (e.g. quantitative, qualitative and creative methods), on the other.

Maintaining an ability to produce “visions” of the relations between mobility and the  humanities, the node also intends to provide transversal application tools that are productive also for more specific research areas, such as the mobility of people, objects, ideas and books.