Major donation to Italian history collections

Two renowned historians of 20th century Italian history, Prof Judith Hellman and Prof. Stephen Hellman, have donated a significant collection of books, pamphlets and periodicals to the University of Glasgow.  With these additions, the University of Glasgow Library now houses one of the largest collections of 20th century Italian history material in the UK.  The collection will benefit scholars, postgraduates and students from the Glasgow area and further afield in Scotland and the rest of the UK.  Thanks to the collection, prospective postgraduate students wishing to specialize in 20th century Italian history will find Glasgow an attractive place to study.

The collection is clustered around two main themes: history of the communist party (Partito comunista italiano, PCI), and women’s history.  As the PCI was the largest out-of-government communist party in Europe during the Cold War period, as well as the second-largest political force in the country, the material sheds light not only on the history of the party but also on 20th  century Marxist debate, and on postwar Italy.  The material includes writing by the party’s leaders such as Palmiro Togliatti and Enrico Berlinguer, its major political and cultural periodicals (such as Rinascita), and studies of Italian society, politics and economy (including, for instance, detailed analyses of major industrial disputes).  The material is in English and Italian.

The women’s history collection includes fictional writing by Italian’s most renowned 20th century authors such as Sibilla Aleramo, primary material (periodicals, pamphlets) produced by the major feminist groups and women’s organisations of the 1950s-70s (including Unione donne italiane), feminist theory, and women’s history.  The material is in English and Italian, and will be of interest to scholars of 20th century Italy, and to those working on feminist theory and women’s writing.

These titles are now catalogued and are available through the library catalogue.  An list of these titles is available for download below. Please contact Roma Thompson with any enquiries about this collection.

Hellman donation – list of titles

An additional selection of papers (outline details available for download here) are held by Dr Bracke in History.

Hellman donation – list of titles with History

A one-day workshop on modern Italian history and culture and the Italo-Scots community is scheduled for May 2104 at the University of Glasgow.  Stephen and Judith Hellman will be present at the workshop to discuss the collection, and invited speakers from Scottish and North English universities will present the wealth of research currently carried out in this area.  For more information on this workshop, please contact Dr Maud Anne Bracke.

Dr Bracke and Clare Paterson would like to thank for their support the History Subject and the School of Modern Languages and Cultures.

Categories: Library

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1 reply


  1. Society, Culture and Conflict in 20th Century Italy | Center for italian Studies

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