“From Scotland to the South of the Mediterranean: The Thought of Adam Smith Through Europe and Beyond”

International Conference of the History of Economics Society (HES) and University of Palermo, Sicily (Italy)

July 6-7, 2017


Adam Smith is one of those authors who have left a very profound sign in the history of ideas. An influence that has contributed to model not only the culture but also the institutions and the policy of the modern society and that can be explained by observing the international spread of his thought, which reached every corner of the world in a short lapse of time.

Yet, the reception of Smithian ideas was not a unique and uniform process, equal for every country, because different regional contexts conditioned it. Smith’s works made entry through institutional, cultural, linguistic, religious, and political filters which were not neutral and which affected the reading, understanding and use of them.

Europe and the Mediterranean are two geographical areas – but not the only – to observe the spread of Smithian thought because of the rich pluralism characterizing their regions and nations. With reference to this prospective, the University of Palermo – supported by the History of Economics Society (HES New Initiatives Fund) – invites proposals for papers and/or sessions along the lines listed below or on others relevant to develop this prospective of inquiry.

The thematic directions suggested are:

  • Adam Smith, the Scottish Enlightenment and the European Enlightenment: similarities, differences in methods and analysis, influences, intellectual disagreements;
  • The intellectual link between Smith’s teaching and the development of a national style of economics in the various countries from the 18th century to the 19th and 20th centuries;
  • The reception of Smithian thoughts in different religious frameworks: Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, Muslim and Jewish;
  • Smithian liberalism as an intellectual source of the liberal revolutionary phase that in the 19th century changed the political and economic face of Europe and the Mediterranean;
  • The works of Adam Smith: language, style, translations.

Official language: English

The Scientific Committee:

Christopher Berry (University of Glasgow), Maria Pia Paganelli (Trinity University), Sandra Peart (University of Richmond), Fabrizio Simon (University of Palermo), Craig Smith (University of Glasgow)

The Organizing Committee:

Fabrizio Simon, Anna Li Donni, Cristina Guccione, Anna Rita Panebianco

Scholars planning to participate should submit a 500-word abstract for a paper or a 1000-word abstract for a session, specifying in the following abstract form: the title of their presentation and the conference theme, their full name and institutional affiliation, and an e-mail address for correspondence.

Deadlines to remember:

Submission of abstracts: No later than 8 January 2017

Notification of acceptance: 28 February 2017

Registration: No later than 30 April 2017

Sending of paper: No later than 31 May 2017

For further information on the conference (venue, registration, accommodation) see the conference website at http://www.unipa.it/dipartimenti/seas/SmithConference/


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