Marginalised People, the State and the Mixed Economy of Welfare: Entangling European Experiences, 1918-1939

The Action is pleased to announce the new project Marginalised People, the State and the Mixed Economy of Welfare: Entangling European Experiences, 1918-1939 led by Michele Mioni – Stefano Petrungaro

The proposal aims to shed light on the interrelation between socially marginalised people (vagrants, beggars, poor and/or sick people, migrants, mentally ills, war invalids, orphans, prostitutes, etc.), and the actors in charge of their assistance: the State, local authorities and the constellation of the voluntary and informal sector. The main framework of the investigation is therefore the so called “mixed economy of welfare” and its impact on some of its recipients. While not all the recipients of social assistance were ascribable to the category of “socially marginalised people”, the project is concerned with those who, at that time, bore this stigma. By so doing, we aim to narrow our target to the field of “marginality” during the interwar period. The proposal focuses on these composite social groups as targets of social assistance, benefits, healthcare, and on the wide-range of public and private actors as provider of social aid. On the other hand, the analysis equally takes due account of the effects in terms of social control and social disciplining. The proposal draws from different experiences of various European countries between 1918 and 1939, and opens up to transnational/comparative analyses, as well as the interplay between centre and peripheries. It explores marginality and intersectionality in the face of policies, actions, ideas, discourses carried on by the States and the variegated world that composed the “mixed economic of welfare”. By so doing, the proposal dwells on the dynamic processes that entailed the interaction between social groups, non-State actors, public authorities on a local, national, and transnational level. It emphasises synergy and competition between private and public sector, perceptions and discourses concerning marginalised people, political uses of social assistance, the combination of assistance and coercion underpinning social actions, self-aid, and resistances to social control.

For further information see the PDF attached.