A five year project, it aims at achieving and disseminating greater understanding of both the actual histories and the self-representations of the past current in Europe today, highlighting both diversities and connections and explaining the context of their development. It brings together historians, geographers, art historians, linguists, theologists, philologists, sociologists and philosophers in order to explore how differences, connections, conflicts and positive interaction have developed in the past and can develop in the future. It involves 180 research staff and doctoral students from 31 countries.
The exact priorities, pathways and specific work-plan of the Thematic Working Group of Cliohres responsible for work, gender and society will be defined by the Group itself and will follow the general scheme outlined. However on the basis of the planning which has already taken place, we may say that the agenda of this group is to look at the different ways in which society has organised itself in different times and places, with respect to the organisation of labour, the definition of gender roles, civic and family structures. The ways in which these forms of organisation have been – or have not been – exported to other parts of the world, the extent to which they define a kind of European-ness, or vice versa, the extent to which national, regional and chronological differences are significant within Europe will be examined as will the links with colonial society and with political and economic changes in the role of Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries. The central methodological core around which this TWG will work sees the study of gender as a valuable tool for understanding social structures and their evolutions rather than as an end in itself.