During a pandemic, we inevitably cast our minds back to the many occasions, whether they were health or environmental catastrophes or socio-political crises, when individuals and groups found an answer to their problems in different kinds of games and entertainment.
This is the theme of the study seminar Games and crises. Ludicity, environmental challenges and social conflict between the Middle Ages and modern day organised by the Fondazione Benetton Studi Ricerche, as part of its research, documentation and publishing activities focusing on the history of games.
Games and crises
seminar curated by Alessandro Arcangeli, Gherardo Ortalli, Alessandra Rizzi
10am – 1pm
Greetings and opening remarks by Gherardo Ortalli (director of the Fondazione Benetton magazine, «Ludica. Annals of the history and culture of games»);
introduction and coordination by Alessandra Rizzi (Ca’ Foscari University of Venice);
Juan Antonio Jiménez Sánchez (University of Barcelona): Entertainment and crises in the 5th-century Roman Empire;
Christian Jaser (University of Klagenfurt): Games and conflict: contestations in ‘palio’ races in the socio-political and legal context of Renaissance Italy;
Diane Roussel (Université Gustave Eiffel, Marne-la-Vallée): Do games make us violent? Gambling and popular pastimes under the eyes of criminal justice (Paris, 16th-17th century);
2.30pm – 5.30pm
Opening remarks and coordination by Alessandro Arcangeli (University of Verona);
Renzo Bragantini (Sapienza University of Rome): Regulating amusement. Plagues and storytelling in the Decameron;
Francesca Alberti (The French Academy in Rome-Villa Medici): The theory of laughter in Robert Klein: games and reality;
Élisabeth Belmas (Université Sorbonne Paris Nord): Learning to play in a crisis: epistemological reflections;
discussion and closing remarks by Alessandro Arcangeli.
Gaetano Cozzi Prize for studies on the history of games 2022:
introduced and coordinated by Patrizia Boschiero (Fondazione Benetton);
interventions by the two young prize winners:
George Brocklehurst, Convivial Humanism: Giovanni Pontano on Scholarship as Virtuous Play;
Eleonora Gamba, Il compleanno di un patrizio veneziano alla fine del XV secolo fra divertimento ed erudizione: la testimonianza del De ludo talario di Leonico Tomeo;
discussion, reading of the motivations for the award, presentation of the prizes and closing remarks by Gherardo Ortalli (chairman of the Selection Committee).