Round Tables

Disciplined Dissent: Political Recognition and Forms of Negotiation Beyond the Public Sphere. Some Case Studies in Medieval and Early Modern Europe (11th to 17th Centuries)
Session code
Date Time
Tuesday, August 23rd / 09.00-12.30
Fabrizio Titone
Collegium Novum, C3

The Round Table aims to develop the analysis of disciplined dissent by looking at forms of political recognition of individuals/groups that did not have a public role or had only a minor public role. The session aims to show that a political role cannot be reduced to the performance of a public office and that even marginal public functions could have an impact upon the exercise of power/governmental activity. To these ends the participants will investigate the systematic interrelations between the public and private sphere; and also the flow of information between the palace/court, the square, the neighbourhood, the market and the household. The broad spectrum of analysis will consider familial contexts, political confrontation, social practices. The session will be centered on the concept of disciplined dissent. The methodology according to this notion offers an approach to identifying the causes and effects of forms of non-violent protest in the late Middle Ages. Forms of disciplined dissent refer to the processes of appropriation – whereby those targeted by policies of marginalization and/or those who had a minor public role or indeed any public role might appropriate the rhetoric and political repertoire of those in a position of authority. An appropriation frequently realized through negotiations designed to counter forms of marginalization, to gain some recognition as reliable interlocutors. This same process served to decenter the exercise of power and was organized/realized according to the needs, values and social expectations of those engaged in disciplined dissent.