Prima della Città degli Studi di Roma. Le strategie per l'edilizia universitaria nell'Italia liberale e un progetto esemplare
In: Quaderni dell'Istituto di Storia dell'Architettura, 2018
In the aftermath of Italian Unity, the need to address the question of university buildings was perceived as an urgent matter in the political world and in the academic community. In Italy, the transformation of the places of knowledge, considered insufficient, was related to the manifestation of the sense of patriotism through the Science. In this context, the Roman university was considered the symbol of the finally reached national Unity. Therefore, the realization of scientific establishments in the pope’s city was for all men of science, and not just for the politicians, a matter of primary importance. Which strategies had to be implemented to achieve this goal? Who were the actors of choices, which led to the transformation of former monasteries or even entire urban areas? And who were the real directors of complex real estate transactions that involved capitals, professors, engineers? On the basis of unpublished documents and drawings, and through the reinterpretation of little-known print sources, often neglected by historiography, this contribution aims to answer these questions, addressing the topic of higher education, starting from the post-unification Roman situation with the new complex in the Viminale area. The Roman case is compared with other cases (from Turin to Pavia, from Parma to Padua and others), with the aim of understanding the forces and the ideas put in place by the rectors of the different universities, who tried to transform, expand, build true citadels of knowledge. In this sense, the emblematic case of the project of the new Neapolitan university conceived by Mariano Edoardo Cannizzaro is deeply analyzed, because the topic of insufficient offices and decentralization was addressed with a detailed project, for the first time in Italy, of a “Città degli Studi”, autonomous and complete.