Felicita was a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow at the Centre for the Study of the Renaissance between 2016-2018, working on, 'Migration in the Early Modern World: the Franciscans of the Custody of the Holy Land as a Facilitator of the Circulation of People in the Mediterranean (MIGMED).' The aim of the project was to deepen current knowledge of early modern mobility across the Mediterranean (1600-1800) addressing some methodological problems and focusing on issues that have been neglected by previous historiography such as the link between short and long- distance mobility; and the respective roles of local, regional and global factors. These issues were addressed through the analysis of people’s movements through the houses of the Franciscans of the Custody of the Holy Land in the Eastern Mediterranean, on both a local (Palestinian) and a regional (Mediterranean) level.
The project was doubly innovative in using a new type of primary source – parish registers from Palestine – to pioneer interaction between distinct fields – European parish research, Ottoman social history, migration studies and network analysis – in a multi-religious landscape. By acknowledging migration as a multi-causal process involving economics, history, politics, socioeconomic structures alongside individual agency, the research project aimed to arrive at a clearer understanding of personal motives, institutional frameworks and circumstantial factors.
Besides advancing Mediterranean historiography on migration, the project aimed to open avenues for further research and to suggest a new methodological approach to the study of mobility in pre-modern societies. Furthermore, thanks to the broad geographical and thematic perspective, the research also advanced major fields like religious history / confessionalization, intercultural exchanges and history of Catholic parishes. Finally, departing from the analysis of migration in the early modern Mediterranean, the project contributed to current debate on contemporary migration, enlarging its perspective and challenging its very basic elements. https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/ren/projects/earlymodernworldmigration
Before I came to Warwick, I was fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (2015-1016). Between 2010 and 2013 I worked the Scientific coordinator (for the University of Palermo) of the research project “Beyond "Holy War". Managing Conflicts and Crossing Cultural Borders between Christendom and Islam from the Mediterranean to the extra-European World: Mediation, Transfer, Conversion (XVth-XIXth Century)”, financed by the Italian Ministry of the University. Between 2009 and 2010, I was a researcher at the Oriental Institute of the Martin Luther University of Halle - Wittenberg (Germany). I have thought Early Modern History at the University of Palermo (2013-2013) and History of Islamic coiuntries at the University of Enna-Kore (2013-2015), both in Italy.
My main research interests are Mediterranean history and the social history of the Ottoman Empire in the Early Modern period (1500-1800). Most of my research activity has been focused on Ottoman Palestine, with special attention to the history of Palestinian villages; I have written on religious conversions, changes in the distribution of the population, Franciscans' missionary activity and the spread of Catholicism in the area. I have also worked on Ottoman justice, on the contacts between the two shores of Early Modern Mediterranean, on Mediterranean slavery and on contacts and interactions between Protestant and Catholics in the Ottoman Empire.
List of Publications