Pubblicato il: 02/05/2023
Instructors of the Department of Historical Studies at work on a manuscript

Instructors of the Department of Historical Studies at work on a manuscript

A specialised training in the analysis, treatment, conservation and valorization of classical, medieval and modern manuscripts, with an integrated approach that combines traditional and digital techniques to develop professional skills that can be applied in cultural institutions, archives, libraries and museums.

This is what the new Summer School Integrating Traditional and Digital Approaches in Manuscripts Studies(INTRADAMS) is all about. INTRADAMS is a programme open to graduates in the fields of humanities, sciences and IT, 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 26 June to 7 July and applications are open until 15 May 2023.

This is the first edition of INTRADAMS, which was born out of the desire to promote an innovative form of training. The goal is to provide future professionals with a cross-cutting set of skills in high demand in a sector that is truly interdisciplinary and rapidly growing, both in Italy and internationally. These specialists will be able to work for cultural institutions, on the conservation, valorization and study of manuscripts held by archives, libraries and museums. Along this line, the programme 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.

In addition to theoretical classes, the Summer School also offers practical workshops. This is a chance for students to challenge themselves with real cases by putting into practice the methods learnt during the course, and to promote new approaches to the conservation, dissemination and valorization of manuscripts and their contents.

The project 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 couple of years ago, both in terms of research as well as for the conservation and valorization of our cultural heritage. This partnership with the scholars from Rochester is the result of our work on a real case, a palimpsest manuscript held by the Biblioteca Capitolare of Vercelli, dating back between the end of the 12th century and the early 13th century. Using multispectral analysis techniques, we are bringing back to light documents that had been erased a long time ago and re-used for one of the oldest copies of a treaty against the Cathars. Studying these documents will not only provide us with new and valuable sources, but will also help us better understand the transformations undergone by institutions - and their archives and libraries - during the Middle Ages. During our Summer School, we will focus on a similar case: a manuscript of Dante’s Divine Comedy from the 15th century, which was manufactured using older pieces of parchment and is now held by the Biblioteca Trivulziana at the Castello Sforzesco in Milan.

Link to the call for applications to the Summer School