CfP: The rail and the train: two centuries of evolution

Call for papers, deadline 30 September 2022

International Conference The rail and the train: two centuries of evolution

Promoted by the Filippo Turati Foundation for Historical Studies with the patronage of the Italian FS Foundation and the University of Siena

Pistoia Deposito Rotabili Storici Fondazione FS 25-26 November 2022

From the tracks of mines to high-speed trains, the train spread throughout most of the countries of the world for over two centuries. In this long period, it has undergone a continuous evolution to adapt to the needs that have gradually emerged. The tracks and the train, in fact, have not remained the same from 1800 to the present day, but have continually adapted to the technical progress that has taken place, from the improvement of the rails, made more and more stable, long and heavy, to the improvement of carriages and locomotives.

The train that runs on the tracks is no longer the same as in 1825 (the opening date of the first line in the world Stockton-Darlington), but one thing unites history with the present: the "rail", which although changed and improved, makes the system always similar to that of the origins. The guided system of the railway type is still present everywhere, it has had subsidiaries with trams and subways; the tracks have the same width as those of the nineteenth century, although today they allow speeds that in tests exceeded 500 km/h.

The purpose of the conference is also to reflect on the present of rail transport networks, and on the need to improve and increase them, also as a response to those who propose new and futuristic solutions, without knowing the surprising evolution of rail.

Themes of the conference:
The rail revolution in Europe
The rail economic development agent
How the rail has changed daily habits
The rail between imagination and culture: art, literature, cinema
The technique on the tracks: gauge, rack, funicular, high speed
Rail networks: the rails in the territory for freight and passengers
Rail workers: railway and tram workers
The tracks and borders: tunnels, border stations, seaports

The abstracts (max. 300 words) and CV (max. 1 page) must be delivered to the email address and will be chosen by the scientific committee.
The deadline for submission is on the 30th of September. The acceptance of the paper will be communicated by 15th of October. The speakers will be guaranteed hospitality with lunch, dinner and overnight stay, travel excluded.