Silvia Bellacicco (Project Manager)

Silvia is an expert in European funding and Euro-planning, as well as in project management and implementation. She holds a degree in Marine Environmental Sciences (2000) from the “Ca’ Foscari” Università di Venezia, and since 2001 she has worked on European funding for public bodies such as municipalities, research institutes/universities, as well as civil regions and private companies. She has extensive experience in project/partnership coordination and management, and in providing technical and financial assistance for the project leaders and associates.

Omar Del Nonno (Pre-Doc)

Omar is a PhD student at the Ca' Foscari of Venice. He studied at Università degli Studi Roma Tre in 2009 and graduated with a Bachelor thesis on “The Limits of Language in Wittgenstein” under the supervision of Paolo Virno in 2013. Afterwards, he moved to Berlin to continue his studies at the Humboldt Universität zu Berlin. There, he focused on Spinoza's Philosophy and the German Idealism and graduated with a Master Thesis entitled “The Reality of Finite Modes in Spinoza's Theory of Substance” under the direction of Dominik Perler. In his PhD project he takes the cue from Hegel's criticism of Acosmism to investigate Spinoza's Metaphysics.

Sascha Freyberg (Editorial Manager)

Sascha is a research fellow and the editorial manager of the project responsible for its two book series Knowledge Hegemonies and Verum factum. He studied cultural sciences and philosophy in Hagen and Berlin and graduated with a Master Thesis on Ernst Cassirer's critique of symbolic consciousness. Currently is finishing a PhD thesis on the relation of experiment and metaphysics in Edgar Wind’s epistemology at the Ruprecht Karls University Heidelberg.

Matteo Fornasier (Pre-Doc)

Matteo is a PhD student at Università Ca’Foscari of Venice. He graduated at Università Ca'Foscari in 2018. His main interests concern the history of philosophy, especially Renaissance philosophy as well as early modern science and medicine.

Project: Renaissance thinking in the medical culture of the Parisian Academy in early modern times

Giulia Gandolfi (Pre-Doc)

Giulia is a PHD student in Ca Foscari of Venice and in Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne of Paris. She studied at University of Bologna and she has researched in Paris, thanks to a scholarship, for a year at ENS of Paris. She graduated at University of Bologna with a thesis on Georges Canguilhem under the supervisor of Professor M. Iofrida (University of Bologna) and Professor S. Roux (ENS Paris).

Project: George Canguilhem’s Naturalistic Epistemology and the Problem of Biological Normativity

Rodolfo Garau (Post-Doc)

Rodolfo is a historian of philosophy and of science. After his PhD (2015), he held postdoctoral positions at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin and at the Université du Quebéc à Trois-Rivières, and, as adjunct lecturer, at Bard College Berlin as well as at the University of Turin. His current research foci are: 1. the cross-use of concepts between physics, biology, and metaphysics in the early modern period, on which he is preparing a volume exploring the history of the concept of conatus (“endeavor”) between late-Scholastic and modern science and philosophy and the critical investigation of the emergence of, and correlation between, modern race theories and criminology. The focus of his research project in the framework of the Early Modern Cosmology group is the physics, astronomy, and logic of Pierre Gassendi, of whom he is translating the Syntagma philosophicum (with Justin E. H. Smith) for Oxford University Press.

Gerardo Ienna (Post-Doc)

Gerardo works at the boundary between historical epistemology, historiography of science and sociology of science. After his PhD (2019) at University of Bologna, he held a post-doctoral position at University of Verona and collaborated with the Free University of Bolzano. He also taught, as adjoint lecturer, Logic and Philosophy of science at the University of Verona. His current research foci are: 1) marxist historiography of science 2) French historical epistemology 4) historical sociology of science 5) Science and technology studies. The focus of his research project in the framework of the Early Modern Cosmology group is the socio-historical-epistemology of scientific revolutions.

Tayra MC Lanuza-Navarro (Post-Doc)

Tayra is a historian of science specializing in the history of early modern astronomy and astrology, focusing on the study of the astrological ideas, practices and works of early modern astronomers, cosmographers, natural philosophers and physicians, on the teaching of astrology at universities, and on the censorship of astrology and related disciplines by the Spanish Inquisition. Her work investigates early modern astronomy, astrology and medicine by approaching them as a unified body of knowledge, as understood by the historical actors, while simultaneously placing the role of astrology in the astronomical and cosmological debates, and in the practice of medicine in the period. She has published several articles and book chapters on astrology, science and society in the early modern period, most recently "Pedro Sánchez Ciruelo. A commentary to the Sphere with a defence of astrology" in Valleriani, M. (ed.) De sphaera of Johannes de Sacrobosco in the Early Modern Period. The Authors of the Commentaries, Springer Nature, 2020.
Her project in Venice at the ERC-EarlyModernCosmology studies the content of astrological knowledge and its cosmological consequences particularly among Jesuits and as revealed by inquisitorial sources, focusing mainly on the political and confessional contexts created at the Jesuit Colegio Imperial, in Madrid, and by the Spanish Inquisition.

Lukas Meisner (Pre-Doc)

Lukas is a PhD student at the Ca’ Foscari University of Venice. He received his undergraduate education in Philosophy and Comparative Literature from the Karls Universität Tübingen, the University of Essex and the Freie Universität Berlin, finishing it with a Bachelor thesis on Adorno's late work. Following that, he completed his Masters at the Sociology department of Goldsmiths College, University of London, with a dissertation on autonomy and political economy. In his PhD project, he is writing a political epistemology of the historic avant-gardes' artistic critique as an anticipatory ideology of post-modernisation. In doing so, he attempts to re-actualise Critical Theory for the 21st century.

Pietro Daniel Omodeo (Principal Investigator)

Pietro is an historian of science and philosophy and a professor of the philosophy of science. His research focuses on science, philosophy, and literature in early modernity, as well as on historical epistemology. His work encompasses the ontological and epistemological premises of medieval and early-modern natural philosophy and science up to the rise of mechanical visions of the world. Moreover, he has investigated the history of cosmology and physics, in particular post-Copernican astronomy, mechanics, and physico-mathematics. His inquiry into the history of science expands upon the wide cultural interconnections of early scientific debates as well as upon their socio-institutional embedment. His work on historical epistemology focuses on political epistemology along Gramscian lines of investigation. It comprises a critical assessment of the agendas underlying the historiography of science.

For his curriculum vitae and publications, see his profile on the University webpage.

Lindsay Parkhowell (Copy-Editor)

Lindsay is the copy-editor of the ERC project EarlyModernCosmology. He is a graduate of Bard College, Berlin, and a former editorial assistant at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science. He is also the Secretary for Propaganda and Poetics of the Avtonomi Akadimia, an adisciplinary, democratic arts University in Athens.

Jacomien Prins (non-tenured Assistant Professor)

Jacomien is an Research Associate at the Department of Philosophy and Cultural Heritage of Ca’Foscari University of Venice. She has worked extensively on the interaction between philosophy and music. Her published work includes Echoes of an Invisible World: Marsilio Ficino and Francesco Patrizi on Cosmic Order and Music Theory (Leiden: Brill, 2014), Sing Aloud Harmonious Spheres: Renaissance Conceptions of Cosmic Harmony (Abingdon: Routledge, 2017), The Routledge Companion to Music, Mind, and Well-being (Abingdon: Routledge, 2018), Marsilio Ficino: Commentary on the Timaeus, critical edition accompanied by an English translation (Cambridge, Ma: Harvard University Press), The I Tatti Renaissance Library (ITRL), 2 vols. (forthcoming), and ‘A Well-tempered Life’: Music, Health and Happiness in Renaissance Learning (in preparation). She is currently working on a research project titled ‘Marin Mersenne: Harmonist at the Heart of the Scientific Revolution’ and teaches courses in the history of philosophy, science and music, and philosophy of science.

Francesca Putignano (Pre-Doc)

Francesca is a PhD student at the Ca’ Foscari University of Venice. She has graduated with honors at the University of Bari, with a bachelor thesis in the field of Contemporary Studies and Gender Studies. She continued her studies at the University of Bologna where she graduated with honors with a master thesis’s on Philosophy of Science. Part of her thesis work was done at the University of Helsinki in Finland, thanks to a scholarship she received. In Helsinki, she worked under the supervision of Kristina Rolin.
Her main interests are feminist epistemology and philosophy of science and she focusses especially on socio-political consequences of scientific production. Her PhD project in feminist epistemology and science studies considers a political epistemological approach, (inspired by Gramscian reflections), which can shed light on the specific interrelations between social conditions, interests, biases and the production and reproduction of science.

H Darrel Rutkin (non-tenured Assistant Professor)

Darrel is a historian of science and philosophy specializing in the history of medieval, Renaissance and early modern astrology, ca. 1250-1800. His work focuses on astrology’s numerous relationships to science, theology and magic within their relevant conceptual, institutional, confessional, socio-political and cultural contexts over the longue durée. Among many other questions, he is concerned to establish astrology’s centrality to the premodern Aristotelian-Ptolemaic understanding of nature ca. 1250-1600 both conceptually and institutionally. He then uses these structures—especially the patterns of their teaching at the finest premodern universities—to reveal the complex patterns of how astrology was marginalized and ultimately removed from the map of legitimate knowledge and practice during the Scientific Revolution and the Enlightenment.

Among numerous other publications, he has recently completed volume I of his first monograph, Sapientia Astrologica: Astrology, Magic and Natural Knowledge, ca. 1250-1800, that is currently in press in the series, “Archimedes: New Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology,” Jed Z. Buchwald (ed), Dordrecht: Springer, 3 vols. Volume I is entitled, “Medieval Structures (1250-1500): Conceptual, Institutional, Socio-Political, Religous and Cultural.” He has also co-edited Horoscopes and Public Spheres: Essays on the History of Astrology, with Günther Oestmann and Kocku von Stuckrad (Berlin, 2005), His most recent publication is “How to Accurately Account for Astrology’s Marginalization in the History of Science and Culture: The Essential Importance of an Interpretive Framework,” in a special issue of Early Science and Medicine edited by Hiro Hirai and Rienk Vermij, 23 (2018): 217-43. He has also contributed to the Cambridge History of Science and the Harvard Companion to the Classical Tradition.

His project in the framework of the Early Modern Cosmology group is the work on the second volume of Sapientia Astrologica.

Charles T. Wolfe (non-tenured Assistant Professor)

Charles works primarily in history and philosophy of the early modern life sciences, with a particular interest in materialism and vitalism. He is the author of Materialism: A Historico-Philosophical Introduction (Springer, 2016) and La philosophie de la biologie: une histoire du vitalisme (Classiques Garnier, 2019), and has edited volumes including Monsters and Philosophy (2005), The Body as Object and Instrument of Knowledge (2010, with O. Gal), Vitalism and the scientific image in post-Enlightenment life-science (2013, with S. Normandin), Brain Theory (2014), Physique de l’esprit (2018, w. J.C. Dupont), and Philosophy of Biology before Biology (2019, w. C. Bognon-Küss). Among his current projects are a coedited volume (with A. Clericuzio and P. Pecere) entitled Mechanism, Life and Mind in the ‘modern’ era and a volume in French of his collected papers on materialism entitled Lire le matérialisme. He is co-editor of the book series ‘History, Philosophy and Theory of the Life Sciences’ (Springer).

Within the framework of the ERC-EarlyModernCosmology project Charles is working on the theme "Life as concept and as science: A reconstruction of modern vitalism".

Gregorio Baldin (Post-Doc 01/07/2018-30/06/2019)

Gregorio obtained his PhD in 2015 in history of philosophy at the University of Piemonte Orientale (supervisor: Gianni Paganini), he has been postdoctoral researcher at École Normale Supérieure de Lyon (LabEx Comod) and he taught history and philosophy in Italian high school. His research mainly deals with the spread of scientific and political ideas in 17th Century, focusing on the figures of Thomas Hobbes and Paolo Sarpi. In his studies, he paid attention to: the development of Galilean science in Hobbes and Sarpi, the presence of the Republic of Venice in Hobbes’ political philosophy, the question of the Interdict crisis in Hobbes, the influence of the myth of Gallic Hercules and the French religious wars in Hobbes’ thought and the development of mathematical and scientific concepts in mid-17th century Paris.
He is the author of Hobbes e Galileo. Metodo, materia e scienza del moto (Florence: Olschki, 2017), which will appear soon in English translation and La croisée des savoirs: Hobbes, Mersenne, Descartes (forthcoming). He also published several articles in Galilaeana, Rivista di storia della filosofia, Storia del pensiero politico.

Project: The Lion and the Leviathan: Hobbes, Sarpi and the Republic of Venice

Marco Storni (Post-Doc 01/04/2019-31/03/2020)

Marco is a historian of science and philosophy, specializing in early modern epistemology, scientific practices, and the history of the exact sciences. After completing his PhD (2018) at the École Normale Supérieure of Paris and the University of Bologna (joint supervision), he has been graduate assistant at the University of Neuchâtel and Herzog-Ernst fellow at the Gotha Research Centre of Erfurt University.

His current research interests include: (1) institutions and scientific practices in the early modern times; (2) early eighteenth century epistemological theories; (3) chemical and alchemical practices in the seventeenth century.

His project in the framework of the Early Modern Cosmology group deals with the cosmological and institutional stakes in the debate on the shape of the Earth (1672-1740).

Marie Skłodowska-Curie associates

David McOmish (Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow)

David's project work has focused on the literary and material cultures of science in early modern education in Britain. He has a particular research interest in the role played by the early modern commentary tradition on the evolution of new perspectives in cosmology within the universities. Since 2019, David has been Library Fellow at the Centre for Research Collections and IASH at the University of Edinburgh, working on scientific texts used for instruction at Edinburgh in the 17th century. David comes to Ca Foscari to work with Professor Omodeo on the MSC project 'European Networks of the New Sciences in Edinburgh.' The project will excavate pathways of knowledge exchange (epistemic/personal networks) between the Venetian Republic and Northern Europe.

Jonathan Regier (Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow)

Jonathan is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow at Ca’ Foscari. His current project asks how natural philosophy, widely understood, was thought to define and respond to threat in the early modern period, not only natural but also political and spiritual threats. In this framework, he is interested in the emergence of modern views on risk and risk management. He has published widely on early-modern sciences, especially physics and astronomy.

G. Bruno, De Umbris Idearum, 1582.
G. Bruno, Sigillus sigillorum, 1583.

Guests and Associates

  • Audrey Borowski
    Visiting student from 18/12/2020 to 15/02/2021
    @ 18/12/2020 University of Oxford (UK)
    Project: Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz in his intellectual and social milieus in the years 1672–79.
  • Nydia Pineda de Ávila
    Visiting scholar from 23/09/2019 to 23/11/2019
    @ 23/11/2019 Universidad Autónoma de México (Mexico)
    Project: Situating cosmological debates in New Spain in global intellectual networks
  • Silvina Paula Vidal
    Guest from 20/03/2019 to 25/03/2019
    @25/03/2019 University of San Martin (Argentina)
    Project: Giordano Bruno’s metaphor of the Spanish conquest as a “swallowing whale
  • Senthil Babu
    Visiting scholar from 01/02/2019 to 30/04/2019
    @ 30/04/2019 Institut Français de Pondichéry (India)
    Project: Canals and computations: a comparative understanding irrigation engineering and social relations in the Kaveri Delta in south India and Venice
  • Doina-Cristina Rusu
    Visiting scholar from 08/10/2018 to 30/11/2018
    @ 30/11/2018 Faculty of Philosophy, University of Groningen (The Netherlands)
    Project: Cosmology and Redemption in Anne Conway’s Metaphysics
  • Anna Jerratsch
    Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin (Germany)
    Project: The Comet of 1577 in Earlymodern Germany
  • Alberto Bardi
    Polonsky Academy for Advanced Studies, Van Leer Jerusalem Institute (Israel)
    Project: The Astronomical Manuscripts of the Bessarion's Collection at the Marciana Library