Maarten Van Dijck (1980) obtained his master's degree in early modern cultural history at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in 2002. His MA thesis dealt with confraternal life in a small rural region in the Duchy of Brabant during the early modern period. After finishing his studies in Leuven, he moved to the University of Antwerp, where he started his PhD research under the supervision of Guido Marnef and Bruno Blondé. In the meanwhile he got a training in social and economic history at the N.W. Posthumus Institute in the Netherlands. His PhD dissertation was a study about the complex relation between social control, urbanization and behavior changes in Brabantine cities during the late medieval and the early modern period.
His current research concentrates on the evolution of the civil societies and the public spheres in the Low Countries during the late medieval and the early modern period. In 2009, he participated in the summer seminar of the Making Publics research program at McGill University in Montreal. His research deals with asociational life and the formation of publics during the period 1350-1850. The central question concerns the connection between the dynamics of early modern sociability and the rise of a democratic political culture in Western Europe.
He is currently assistant professor in history and theory of the social sciences at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. His teaching concerns the theories and methodologies used in historical and social research (see more about this under the heading ‘teaching’). He is currently a member of the Center for Historical Culture at the Erasmus University Rotterdam and of the Center for Urban History at the University of Antwerp. He also acts as a member of the board of the Flemish-Dutch journal ‘Stadsgeschiedenis’.