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18 Apr 2010

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Our History

The Società Italiana delle Storiche (SIS - Italian Association of Women Historians) was founded in 1989. Its aim was to promote women's and gender history through research, teaching and the conservation of documents and source materials. The Association published the newsletter Agenda (1989-1999) e since 2002 it has published the journal Genesis. SIS has built upon the numerous important research projects and conferences previously organised by the Italian feminist movement. Perhaps the most noteworthy of such initiatives were two journals - DWF (devoted to women's culture and politics) and Memoria, which was Italy's first women's history journal (1981-1991). The Association, according to its Constitution (statuto), aims to highlight women's experience and subjectivity through research and to further enrich the legacy of knowledge which has stemmed from women's and gender history. With this in mind, one of SIS's objectives is to introduce new concepts and categories into historical teaching and research, in order to change their content, the methods employed to conserve documents and the transmission of knowledge. The Association also promotes conferences, national and international meetings (SIS's Conferences 1989-2004), initiatives for school and university students and encourages research by younger scholars.
The Association's Executive Committee (Consiglio direttivo) is composed of 11 members elected by the Annual General Meeting: the Committee appoints the President and Vice-President from its own ranks. Currently SIS has about 360 members: their research interests range over all aspects of the discipline, including political, social, cultural and religious history. Their interests also include the teaching of history, whether in universities, schools or in political and cultural organisations. The membership also includes archivists and librarians. The members are a mixture of those who joined at the beginning and those have become involved in subsequent years: recently, in particular, many young history graduates have joined us. SIS promotes research, organises seminars, conferences and teaching in schools. Sometimes it works in co-operation with local authorities, with the Education Ministry and with institutions of higher education. Two particularly noteworthy SIS initiatives are the Summer School (Scuola Estiva) which takes places annually in Fiesole (Florence), and the Women's and Gender History Prize (Premio di storia delle donne e studi di genere "Franca Pieroni Bortolotti") organised each year in conjunction with Florence City Council. Some of SIS's initiatives have given rise to publications, through which it is possible to trace some of the organisation's history.

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