Conflict and Control: Law and Order in Nineteenth-Century by John A. Davis

By John A. Davis

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Extra info for Conflict and Control: Law and Order in Nineteenth-Century Italy

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In religious and civic ceremonies, in the festivals of patron saints, or in the celebrations of the patrons of the lay confraternities, these hierarchical distinctions were scrupulously set in fixed orders of precedence. Internal hierarchies of status, power and influence did not preclude bitter internal rivalries and conflicts, however. Community was never synonymous with social equality, nor did it necessarily engender solidarity. Even the smallest communities 40 CONFUCf AND CONTROL embraced a myriad of different kin groups, patronage systems and factional groupings, and it was around these sm aller units of allegiance and identity that the life of the communities revolved.

Each community formed a complex social entity which was differentiated by closely observed hierarchies of age, status, occupation, sex and behaviour. Different occupational groups, males and females, the married and the unmarried, the young and the old were all part of a highly complex and hierarchical stratification. An individual's status was reflected not only in the clothes that he or she wore, in the case of women even in the way they wore their hair, but also in the behaviour expected of them.

Even the smallest communities 40 CONFUCf AND CONTROL embraced a myriad of different kin groups, patronage systems and factional groupings, and it was around these sm aller units of allegiance and identity that the life of the communities revolved. Kin and family groupings were important sub-sets, while the lay confraternities provided a vehicle for the formation of broader alliances within the community as a whole. Although the confraternities had originated as devotion al and charitable foundations, their practieal function was often more political and in particular they were frequently the focus for formal factions whose identity was reinforced by the religious emblems and patrons of the confraternity.

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