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Génova y el Atlántico (c.1650-1680). Emprendedores mediterráneos frente al auge del capitalismo del Norte

Dates:
  • Wed 18 Jun 2014 10.00 - 12.00
  Add to Calendar 2014-06-18 10:00 2014-06-18 12:00 Europe/Paris Génova y el Atlántico (c.1650-1680). Emprendedores mediterráneos frente al auge del capitalismo del Norte

While historiography has analyzed the economic rise of northwestern Europe during Seventeenth century, less effort has been devoted to tackle the relative decline of the Mediterranean. Which factors contributed to eclipse the preeminence of south-European merchant-banking networks? How did they react to that shift? This thesis aims at filling that gap by elaborating on the case-study of the Genoese company of Domenico Grillo, offering insight into those questions.
The main argument is that the Genoese not only faced increasing competition for the control of exchange circuits but also the reconfiguration of the institutional arrangements that had sustained their previous role as leaders of European financial markets. Challenging the traditional view of decay, this study reveals an astonishing dynamism of Genoese and Italian merchant-bankers in commercial circuits across and within different states and empires, and suggests that these networks adapted rather than collapsed. Furthermore, it shows something perhaps unexpected: the Genoese response went beyond the Mediterranean and encompassed the Atlantic as well.
The thesis starts discussing how the Genoese case has been traditionally approached, to then examine the role of those networks in European circuits of exchange. Next, a deep investigation is carried out into the institutional devices supporting Grillo’s business in the Americas, exploring how he collaborated and competed with other actors. The study continues analyzing the trading chains he established across the Mediterranean, Atlantic Europe and the Americas. Finally it focuses on the many times neglected role displayed by the Republic of Genoa in framing the performance of Genoese networks abroad.
Using a transnational approach, sources are interrogated in dialogue with the flourishing literature about merchant networks and institutions. Thus, this investigation goes beyond traditional images about the “Genoese capitalism” and revisits one of the axioms underpinning dominant metanarratives about the rise of the so-called “Western civilization”.

Sala Europa, Villa Schifanoia - SCHIFANOIA DD/MM/YYYY
  Sala Europa, Villa Schifanoia - SCHIFANOIA

While historiography has analyzed the economic rise of northwestern Europe during Seventeenth century, less effort has been devoted to tackle the relative decline of the Mediterranean. Which factors contributed to eclipse the preeminence of south-European merchant-banking networks? How did they react to that shift? This thesis aims at filling that gap by elaborating on the case-study of the Genoese company of Domenico Grillo, offering insight into those questions.
The main argument is that the Genoese not only faced increasing competition for the control of exchange circuits but also the reconfiguration of the institutional arrangements that had sustained their previous role as leaders of European financial markets. Challenging the traditional view of decay, this study reveals an astonishing dynamism of Genoese and Italian merchant-bankers in commercial circuits across and within different states and empires, and suggests that these networks adapted rather than collapsed. Furthermore, it shows something perhaps unexpected: the Genoese response went beyond the Mediterranean and encompassed the Atlantic as well.
The thesis starts discussing how the Genoese case has been traditionally approached, to then examine the role of those networks in European circuits of exchange. Next, a deep investigation is carried out into the institutional devices supporting Grillo’s business in the Americas, exploring how he collaborated and competed with other actors. The study continues analyzing the trading chains he established across the Mediterranean, Atlantic Europe and the Americas. Finally it focuses on the many times neglected role displayed by the Republic of Genoa in framing the performance of Genoese networks abroad.
Using a transnational approach, sources are interrogated in dialogue with the flourishing literature about merchant networks and institutions. Thus, this investigation goes beyond traditional images about the “Genoese capitalism” and revisits one of the axioms underpinning dominant metanarratives about the rise of the so-called “Western civilization”.


Location:
Sala Europa, Villa Schifanoia - SCHIFANOIA

Affiliation:
Department of History and Civilization

Type:
Thesis defence

Supervisor:
Prof. Bartolomé Yun Casalilla (EUI and Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Sevilla)

Defendant:
Alejandro Garcia Monton (EUI - Department of History and Civilization)

Examiner:
Regina Grafe (EUI - Department of History and Civilization)
Professor Cátia Antunes (University of Leiden)
Professor Maria Fusaro (University of Exeter)
 

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