Economic History as if People Mattered

Matthew Hilton

Matthew Hilton

On 25-26 March Birmingham’s History department is hosting a conference to mark the life and career of our much missed colleague, Francesca Carnevali.

Organised by her husband, Paolo di Martino and her close friends and colleagues, Andrew Popp and Peter Scott, the two-day event will explore Francesca’s varied historical interests. Francesca started work at Birmingham in the then Department of Economic and Social History in 1996. She was a much loved and vocal presence, always interested in the work and activities of her colleagues, and always giving a warm welcome to each new member of staff.

Her range of interests meant her intellectual networks spread all over the globe. She published widely on various aspects of business and financial history, forms of associational life, local and regional history and micro-history. She was a key figure in British and international business and economic history circle and was a committed champion of women’s history. She taught a range of courses and made an ideal editor of the second edition of 20th Century British history.


Francesca Carnevali, our much loved colleague

Francesca Carnevali, our much loved colleague


Our Centre for Modern British Studies would have learned much from her insights and her research, especially how Britain was always a nodal point in wider networks of exchange and interaction. The range of papers being presented over the two days are a testament to her contribution to the field and to what she would have brought to the Centre. For further information about the event, please contact the organisers:;;


Economic History as if People Mattered: Draft Programme



Economic History as if People Mattered
A Workshop for Dr Francesca Carnevali
University of Birmingham, 25-26th March, 2015
Draft Programme

Wednesday, 25th March
Welcome: 10.00-10.30
Paolo di Martino, Peter Scott, and Andrew Popp

Session 1: 10.30 – 12.00
Andrew Popp, ‘Spectacle, Custom and Ritual: Staging the Social in Industrial Districts’ – Discussant: Ken Lipartito
Ken Lipartito, ‘Trust and Social Capital’ – Discussant: Corey Ross

12.00-13.00: Lunch

Session 2: 13.00-14.30
Peter Scott and James Walker, ‘The transformation of large-scale retailing and the British consumer, 1914-1939’ – Discussant: Alberto Rinaldi
Alberto Rinaldi and Anna Spadevecchia, ‘The Political Economy of Financing Local Production in Italy, 1950-2000’ – Discussant: Andrea Colli
Coffee: 14.30-15.00

Session 3: 15.00-16.30
Jennifer Aston, ‘Counting the Small People: comparing and contrasting methodologies in economic and social history’ – Discussant: James Walker
Chris Wickham, ‘Microhistory’ – Discussant: Andrew Popp

Thursday 26th March

Session 4: 10.30-12.00
Lucy Newton: ‘Small things’: the manufacture, marketing and selling of consumer goods for the Victorian home (1851-1914) – Discussant: Matthew Hilton
Matthew Hilton: ‘New directions in Twentieth-Century British history’ – Discussant: Julie-Marie Strange

Lunch: 12.00-13.00

Session 5: 13.00-14.30
Paolo Di Martino: ‘Miss Francesca feeling for history: a personal perspective on Francesca Carnevali’s academic contribution’ – Discussant: Gavin Shaffer
Andrea Colli: ‘Europe’s difference and comparative history’ – Discussant: Anna Spadevecchia
Coffee: 14.30-15.00

Session 6: 15.00-16.30
Leslie Hannah – ‘Banks, Small Firms and Big Business in Britain’ – Discussant: Adam Tooze
Adam Tooze, ‘TBC’ – Discussant: Les Hannah

16.30-17.00: Closing Remarks

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