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Rodrigo Bonaldo

Rodrigo Bonaldo is a professor of Theory and Philosophy of History at the Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC),and currently a guest scientist of Global History at Freie Universität Berlin (April 2022 - March 2023). Bonaldo received his Ph.D. from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, in December 2014, proposing a conceptual history of national commemorations. He had previously spent a year as a visiting PhD student at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS, Paris, between 2011-2012) holding a CAPES scholarship. After serving as a lecturer at UFSC, Bonaldo joined the History Department in late 2015. Since 2018 he is also a permanent member of the graduate school on Global History at the same university, where he teaches methodology.

His research interests revolve around phenomenology of time, history of concepts, intellectual history, history of historiography and epistemology of humanities. Bonaldo’s research lay particular emphasis on how non-disciplinary forms of historical knowledge shape the public understanding of change over time. For that matter, he conducted research on pre-disciplinary historiographies (such as medieval historiography), as well as on contemporary amateur representations of the past. As a public historian, Bonaldo is co-founder of the project “Theory of History on Wikipedia” (funded by PROEX/UFSC), aimed to write or reword entries on historiography and historical theory hosted at the Portuguese edition of the online encyclopaedia.

Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC)

Introduction to History
Theory of History I (18th and 19th centuries)
Theory of History II (20th and 21st centuries)
Historiography
Classical Antiquity
Ancient Historiography
Medieval History
Medieval Historiography
Social Movements and History

 

Graduate School on Global History (UFSC)

Topics and Methodologies on Global History: agents, theories and temporalities

Bonaldo’s research aims to enquiry the discipline of history from outside of it. Memory, commemorations, pre-disciplinary forms of historical writing, popular representations of the past and contemporary visions of the future inform his research agenda. More recently, being a member of the graduate school on Global History at UFSC (the first to appear in Brazil) also made him question how the historical discipline, traditionally rooted in reporting the experience of time, may change itself in contact with more space-related methodologies.

 

Rodrigo Bonaldo is currently working on the following projects:

What a Global History from the Global South can be? A survey on the active reception of Global History in Brazil and Latin America

How the meaning of global history is being glocalized by Latin American scholars? This project proposes to study the reception of global history in Brazil and Latin America, seeking to understand how historiographical traditions of the region are engaging with, responding to, or appropriating the global turn. More than an inventory of positions, the project aims to enable a debate on central concepts of the discipline of history – and how or whether they are modified by spatial connections. In other words, it is through history of historiography that I seek to understand the active reception of global history in the South American context, but it is in contact with global intellectual history that I want to think about the transit of problems, questions, models of analysis, concepts, research practices, theories and their respective cultural translations.

Amerindianpotential history, digital fractal time and dystopic historical futures In partnership with Ana Carolina Barbosa Pereira (UFBA)

This project explores the emergence of new modalities of the future, characterized by the Anthropocene predicament, digital technologies and dystopian prospects of mass extinction. It proposes to do so through the lens of Amerindian metaphysics of time, arguing for engagement with conceptualisations made by cultures that have already seen the end of their worlds.

Popular science and digital curation: the case for Theory of History on Wikipedia’s Portuguese edition In partnership with Flavia Varella (UFSC)

Wikipedia is a conference meme. Every time a person does not know the answer to a question, a witty colleague will ask him/her to have a look on the online encyclopaedia. And no wonder, for Wikipedia’s reputation as an unreliable, unreferenced hotspot of amateurish trivia-like knowledge precedes any academic debate on the subject. Even so, everybody uses it. Even so, Wikipedia keeps evolving, engaging a community of generalists guided by encyclopaedic principles and stigmergic communication. This project aims to take Wikipedia seriously – and to understand the platform as a possible outreach tool to historical knowledge. The questions raised here – such as the negotiation of epistemic values between theoreticians of history and Wikipedians, or the digital curation of historical information at the database level – are grounded on the experience and data provided by two years of entry production and rewording on Wikipedia’s lusophone version.

Varella, F. and Bonaldo, R (2021). “Todos podem ser divulgadores? Wikipédia e curadoria digital em Teoria da História.” Estudos Ibero-Americanos 2(47): 1-21.

Bonaldo, R (2020). “Performances do passado: drama social e conceito de história nos últimos anos de Alfonso X de Castela.” História da Historiografia 13(33): 59-95.

Bonaldo, R (2017). “Quando a Odebrecht construiu Salvador: a narrativa jornalística da história na coleção Terra Brasilis, de Eduardo Bueno (1998-2006).” Revista Tempo e Argumento 9(20): 130-161.

Varella, F. and Bonaldo, R. “Practices of popular science and digital curation in Theory of History on the Portuguese edition of Wikipedia”. In Bevernage, B. and Raphael, L.(eds.) New roles for professional historians. Forthcoming.

Reaching the People