Students at work during the first edition of the Summer School Integrating Traditional and Digital Approaches in Manuscripts Studies (INTRADAMS)
A specialized training in the analysis, treatment, conservation and valorization of classical, medieval and modern manuscripts, with an integrated approach combining traditional and digital techniques to develop professional skills that can be applied in cultural institutions, archives, libraries and museums.
This is what the Summer School Integrating Traditional and Digital Approaches in Manuscripts Studies (INTRADAMS), now at its second edition, is all about. The course is open to graduates in the fields of humanities, sciences and IT, and promoted by the Department of Historical Studies of the University of Milan in collaboration with the University of Rochester, New York, USA, the Archivio Storico Civico e Biblioteca Trivulziana of Milan, the Biblioteca Ambrosiana of Milan and the Fondazione Museo del Tesoro del Duomo e Archivio Capitolare of Vercelli. The Summer School is taking place from 3 to 14 June 2024 and applications are open until 12 February 2024.
INTRADAMS was born out of the desire to promote an innovative form of training. In fact, the Summer School aims to provide future professionals with a set of cross-cutting skills that are in high demand in the field of manuscript conservation – a sector that is truly interdisciplinary and rapidly growing both in Italy and internationally. The ultimate goal is to equip students to work for cultural institutions that are engaged in the conservation, valorization and study of manuscripts held by archives, libraries and museums. To provide this all-round training, INTRADAMS combines the study of the historical, textual, graphic and material aspects of books and documents – through the interaction of historical, paleographical, codicological, and philological-textual exegesis – with disciplines such as data processing and data management, digital diagnostics, and physics applied to the study of matter.
INTRADAMS offers not only theoretical classes, but also practical workshops. These are a great chance for students to challenge themselves with real-life cases and put into practice the methods learnt during the course. At the same time, workshops are a useful tool to promote new approaches to the conservation, dissemination and valorization of manuscripts and their contents.
The Summer School is coordinated by three instructors of the Department of Historical Studies: Marta Calleri, Marta Luigina Mangini and Giacomo Vignodelli.
They explained: “A multidisciplinary approach to the study of manuscripts opens opportunities that could not even be imagined just a few years ago, both in terms of research as well as for the conservation and valorization of our cultural heritage.The course integrates teaching and research: as a matter of fact, we will work together on a real case, a fifteenth-century manuscript of the Divine Comedy held by the Archivio Storico Civico e Biblioteca Trivulziana of Milan and manufactured using older parchments that once contained other documents. During the first edition of the Summer School, we were able to bring to light some of these documents, which had been erased for centuries, and to learn that they were written in Naples in the 14th century. This is an important discovery, as the city faced a devastating loss of its records during the Second World War. Our work brought to the surface new and unexpected information on the history of this manuscript. For the second edition of the Summer School, we will continue this line of work by further analysing these documents and the other texts hidden in the volume.
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