The Return of the Owl:

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Tuesday, April 10, 2018, 4:30 PM | Chancellor Green 103

Poster for: The Return of the Owl: the Rediscovery of Athenian Democracy in Renaissance Italy

Department of French and Italian presents, Gabriele Pedullà, Università degli studi Roma Tre , The Return of the Owl: the Rediscovery of Athenian Democracy in the Italian Renaissance.

Roughly between the sixth and the fourteenth centuries, almost any knowledge of Athenian democracy as a form of government and as a political history was lost to Western Europe. The full rediscovery took a couple of centuries and coincided with the epoch we traditionally call the Renaissance. Although the legacy of Attic democracy is an extremely relevant topic today, and contemporary debates on Athens take good account of the later phases (in particular the Enlightenment, the American and French Revolutions, and Victorian England), very little is known about this first period, when humanists, antiquarians, painters, and poets worked side by side to rescue the world of Solon and Pericles from darkness. And yet, also because of the great authors directly involved in this engaging process – from Petrarch to Machiavelli, from Perugino to Raffaello –, it is a story well worth being told.

Gabriele Pedullà is associate professor of Italian Literature at the University of Roma Tre,  visiting professor at the Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, Columbia University, and Belknap Visiting Fellow in the Humanities Council and French and Italian (2018), Princeton University.

(In English)