Contemporary Italian Women Philosophers

Stretching the Art of Thinking

Edited by Silvia Benso & Elvira Roncalli

Subjects: Philosophy, Women's Studies, Italian Studies, Cultural Studies, Literature
Series: SUNY series in Contemporary Italian Philosophy
Hardcover : 9781438484914, 222 pages, September 2021
Paperback : 9781438484921, 222 pages, January 2022

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Table of contents


Introduction: Contemporary Italian Women Thinkers: Attending to Thinking, Extending the Art
Silvia Benso and Elvira Roncalli

Part I: Women, Mothers, Bodies

1. The Inner Passage
Luisa Muraro

2. Who Is a Mother?
Maria Luisa Boccia

3. Aporias of the Maternal in the Women's Movement
Lea Melandri

Part II: Subjectivity, Power, and the Political

4. Toward an Ethos of Freedom: Notes on Subjectivity and Power
Simona Forti

5. Biopolitics and Economy: Between Self-Government Practices and New Forms of Control
Laura Bazzicalupo

6. Immunitary Politics
Caterina Resta

Part III: Responsibility, Emotions, Time

7. Responsibility as Being Here in Our Own Time
Laura Boella

8. Emotional Subjects: For the Care of the Future
Elena Pulcini

Part IV: Everyday Life, Action, Transcendence

9. Everyday Life: For a Vision without Transcendences
Enrica Lisciani-Petrini

10. The Symbol in Action
Maria Cristina Bartolomei


11. Mimetic Inclinations: A Dialogue with Adriana Cavarero
Adriana Cavarero and Nidesh Lawtoo


A unique portrayal of the theoretical positions of eleven Italian women thinkers who share the practice of philosophy and extend philosophical work and interests beyond the realm of the discipline strictly defined.


Gathering the contributions of eleven contemporary Italian women thinkers who share a philosophical practice, Contemporary Italian Women Philosophers embraces a general interrelationality, fluidity, and overlapping of concepts for a border-crossing that affects what it means to be subjects that are embodied and participants in the life of their communities, thereby shaping a sense of belonging. Common threads are revealed through the exploration of radically diverse themes (the body, subjectivity, power, freedom, equality, liberation, the emotions, symbolism and metaphors, maternity, reproduction, responsibility, the political, the economic) and approaches (autobiographical styles, personal narratives, rootedness in the everyday, advancement of relationality, empathic responsibility, passions, and commitment to the flourishing of the polis). In their differences, these previously unpublished essays give the reader a glimpse of the fecund and articulated philosophical work of women in the Italian context—a context which has not been and still is not always benign toward women's distinctive originality and creativity.

Silvia Benso is Professor of Philosophy at the Rochester Institute of Technology. She is the author and editor of several books, including Viva Voce: Conversations with Italian Philosophers, also published by SUNY Press. Elvira Roncalli is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Carroll College.