The new CNR Science Lessons section continues on the Ansa channel Scienza&Tecnica.
Each week, CNR researchers discuss current topics in a short 15-minute talk.
Paola Avallone, Director of CNR ISMed, proposes a lesson entitled:
Why is it important to study historical documents of an accounting nature?
Abstract: Historical accounting records are often not among researchers' favourites, as they start from the preconception that numbers are dry. Instead they can tell us a lot, especially if they are traceable among the documents of the ancient Neapolitan public banks operating between the end of the 16th and the end of the 18th century. The credit rings, the major books, the copying newspapers, the pandettes kept in the Historical Archive of the Banco di Napoli, for their characteristics, unique in their kind, allow us to shed light on that sad moment for Naples and the Mezzogiorno, the plague of 1656, in a slightly different way from that to which scholars are accustomed to the disease that halved in a few months the population of the city of Naples.
These institutions had a great importance in that period, because, besides showing that economic activities did not stop, they disbursed thousands of ducats to help the city administration to face the emergency. On these documents one can follow not only all the payments made for the city's needs, but also how much the epidemic cost the central government and how the money was spent, how the population was exhausted, how the epidemic was contained and how effective they were. And it is natural to draw a parallel with what is happening in these dramatic days that the whole of Italy is experiencing.
To stay at home in compliance with the directives of the Government, today as then, is a duty towards the health not only of ourselves, but above all of those around us. And the use of digital humanities allows us to find documents even on the web without going to archives and libraries, thus continuing to do research in smart working mode. Even if, for us historians, the smell of paper and especially touching those documents of the past remains a unique sensation that the virtual document can never give.
Description of the project Science Lessons of the CNR
The emergence of the Coronavirus epidemic is asking everyone to review social and communicative customs. This period can also be seen as an opportunity to find new ways to make the best use of the tools that Information and Communication Technologies provide us today.
The CNR Science Lessons organized by the Communication and Public Relations Unit of Cnr, in collaboration with the Library Unit 'G. Marconi' Library Unit of the CNR, and with the support of Scienza&Tecnica dell'Ansa, were born with the intent to create a new online channel of public science dissemination and continue to take our activities outside the structures of the National Research Council.
From March 12, researchers from the CNR discuss with us current issues in a short 15-minute talk. Each week we will publish a lecture on the Ansa Channel Scienza&Tecnica. The first lesson is 'Mathematics that surrounds us', by Roberto Natalini, director of the Institute for the applications of calculus 'Mauro Picone' of the CNR: but who said that mathematics is useless? It's very useful now more than ever.
To stay updated on all the activities of the Science Lessons and to share comments on the topics, you can also visit the new Facebook page Comunicazione.CNR: https://www.facebook.com/comunicazioneCNR-568598400253350/.
The Editorial Committee of the CNR Science Lessons is composed by: Silvia Mattoni, Edward Bartolucci, Vittorio Tulli, Claudio Scarpino, Mara Di Berardo, Daniela Gaggero (graphics).
For more information:
Secretariat Communication and Public Relations Unit
- Facebook Comunicazione.CNR
- "Chi ha detto che la matematica non serve?" La lezione di Roberto Natalini (Cnr-Iac) 12/03/2020
- Covid19 e peste a Napoli nel 1656