Centre d’histoire des sociétés Médiévales et Modernes - MéMo (Centre for the Historical Study of Medieval and Modern Societies)

MéMo, the Centre for the Historical Study of Medieval and Modern Societies, was formed in January 2020 by a group of medieval and modern historians from Paris 8 University and Paris Nanterre specialising in Western and Islamic history. This laboratory is supervised by the CHiSCO (Paris Nanterre Centre for Research in Western Social and Cultural History) and partially by the EA HISPOSS (Paris 8 University Centre for Historical Research: History of Powers, Knowledge and Societies).

MéMo’s historians focus on a period spanning the 11th to the 18th centuries, pushing the relatively artificial divisions that exists between the Middle Ages and the Modern Era. The historians study the societies from this era, both in terms of the continuation of their ancient roots and the reinventions that sowed the seeds of the Modern Era. They are particularly interested in the development of territorial political powers, which increasingly relied on the written word in their governing techniques, in the affirmation of men of religion as a social group linked to the State, and in the demographic and economic development of cities, which became structuring elements of the territories in a broad geographical area that invites comparison.

Research is structured around four priority areas and one interdisciplinary one:

  1. Social history and the politics of religious fact
  2. Towns and urban society
  3. Islamic worlds
  4. Power, knowledge and written traditions

Interdisciplinary workshop: uses of the past

Disciplinary identity is one of the distinguishing characteristics of this team. Firstly, it satisfies its own desire to provide itself with all the tools necessary to study the concerned societies in all their dimensions by bringing together political historians, religious historians and experts in social and cultural history in order to achieve a broad approach. This disciplinary research is carried out through constant dialogue with the social sciences, particularly the fields of anthropology, sociology, literature, history of art, philosophy and law, and these exchanges are then integrated into the applied work of the historians who make up this new team. This work is accompanied by a monthly seminar (open to young researchers), which adopts new themes every two years.

Université Paris 8 - Université Paris Nanterre

ED 31 : Pratiques et Théories du Sens

Maison de la recherche
2 rue de la Liberté
93526 SAINT-DENIS, France

Website : https://memo.parisnanterre.fr/