«Sophia» XV (2023)

Table of Contents and Abstracts: Issues 1 and 2

«Sophia», Year XV (2023), Issue 1: The 20th Century and Feminine Thinking


15 Years Later (Piero Coda)


The 20th Century and Feminine Thinking (Noemi Sanches)


The Quality of the Feminine Starting with Edith Stein: Perspectives for the constitution of a personal community (Nicoletta Ghigi)

Abstract: This work highlights the specificity of the feminine in humanity from the perspective of Edith Stein. Through the idea of personal vocation, we underline personal individual and its specific characters of uniqueness, showing how, in both man and woman, what is truly peculiar is the personal core and the feminine that can express itself in each core. The emphasis on the feminine should therefore be conceived, in our view, as a further quality that each person possesses in personal quantities and in personal ways, but still constitutive of each individual. To this goal, will show and describe the characteristics,
peculiarities and emerging possibilities of this quality in Steinian anthropology.

Keywords: Phenomenological essence – Personal Core – Quality – Feminine – Individual

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 19-29

Simone Weil: A thought of detachment (Noemi Sanches)

Abstract: Detachment is a fundamental concept in Simone Weil’s theor-etical thought. At the level of thinking, it is qualified by the thinker as the “highest value” of philosophy. Based on this conception, the attempt of the present article is to eviscerate the profound meaning of detachment declined from its relation to philosophical exercise and seeking to delineate the essential features of Weil’s pensée détachée. A thinking that is positioned as an original critical alternative to the “objectifying thinking” that has characterized in particular modern philosophy. Ultimately, we would like to highlight two figures ormodels that embody and ground in a paradigmatic way
the dynamic of Weilian detached thinking. Figures who, being one masculine and the other feminine, can open us to further horizons of reflections about anthropological and ontological meaning of thinking as such.

Keywords: Detachment – Death of the ego -Logos – Metaxu – Matter

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 31-42

Maria Montessori: The redemptive power of education (Giuseppe Milan)

Abstract: Maria Montessori is known for being the creator of one of the most popular pedagogical theories in the world: the Montessori method. Her alternative pedagogy is opposed to traditional teaching, which advocates homogeneous and standardized learning. Montessori advocated that children have The Absorbent Mind, the capacity to develop and learn on their own. In this article, we summarize her fascinating life and some of the most important contributions she has made to education.

Keywords: Childhood education – Child respect – Absorbent mind – Scientific pedagogy – Peace education

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 43-57

Hannah Arendt: Freedom in the story of a lifetime (Laura Boella)

Abstract: Hannah Arendt’s first book, dedicated to Rahel Varnhagen, offers the opportunity to reflect on the interweaving of first and second birth, one of the central themes of Vita activa (1958). Arendt’s theory of political action delivers an idea of freedom which is not an affirmation of the power of the ego against what resists its control. A freedom which maintains its power of innovation intact with respect to any fixation and automatism, but remains bound to reality because in the latter it opens up space of the search for something that goes beyond pure happening, opens up the space for the search for meaning.

Keywords: Love for the world – Fellows of suffering – Freedom – Plurality – Hannah Arendt

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 59-65

Simone de Beauvoir: The 'second sex' between past and present (Angela Ales Bello)

Abstract: Reading once again Simone de Beauvoir’s book, The Second Sex, it is possible to pinpoint some proposals in the field of feminine studies from the twenties of the last century until our times. This book was very important for the French culture in the Fifties, but one has to recognise that in other European countries the situation was different. For example, twenty years before in Germany there was Edith Stein’s proposal of dual anthropology, through which it is possible to tackle the emancipation of women in a better way. The comparison between the two women philosophers let us to clarify Beauvoir’s position on one hand and to deepen the question from a theoretical point of view, which requires a feminine philosophical foundation, on the other.

Keywords: Sex – Gender – Femminism – Difference – Dual Anthropology

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 67-77

María Zambrano. The germination of the aurora and the crises of history (Antonio Bergamo)

Abstract: María Zambrano’s thought questions the meaning of history, outlining an original hermeneutics. This contribution retraces the essential features of her philosophy of history, starting from the metaphor of the dawn, from which a relational humanism and an aesthetics of the word emerge.

Key words: Crisis – Humanism – Aesthetics – Anthropology – Ethics

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 79-93

Adriana Zarri: Mystic and «contempl-active» hermit (Francesco Occhetto)

Abstract: This article presents an introduction about life and thought of Adriana Zarri, the first woman in Italy who declared herself and was collegially recognized as professional theologian. Lay hermit and militant intellectual, beyond having inaugurated the actual flourishing road of italian female theology, Zarri should be especially remembered for the books she wrote. They are a reflection of an peculiar mystical attitude, characteristic element which makes her one of the protagonist of twentieth century’s history of Christianity.

Keywords: Christian mysticism – Trinitarian theology – Lay activism – Emancipation of woman’s role – Spirituality – Ecology

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 95-109

The First Women Doctors of the Church (Christof Betschart)

Abstract: The present contribution reflects on the first women to be proclaimed Doctors of the Church: Teresa of Avila and Catherine of Siena (1970); Thérèse of Lisieux (1997); Hildegard of Bingen (2012). The first point of interest explored here is that of the status of teaching in the Church, outside of the ordained ministry. The article then examines the symbolic and spiritual theology of these women. In conclusion, it attempts to define future points of reference for the ecclesial doctorate, in consideration of what may be described as the specifically female genius.

Keywords: Women in the Church – Doctors of the Church – Munus docendi – Priesthood – Female theology

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 111-119

Paolo Scirpa. Vortices investigating the unknown (Marta Michelacci)

Abstract: Paolo Scirpa, Sicilian artist, has played an important role in the context of twentieth century art. His experiences are in the field of optical art but are characterized by an original style. He is the author of the Ludoscopes, or optical machines with neon structures, which lead the observer to experiment with infinite perspectives. Trained alongside Lucio Fontana and therefore influenced by Spatialism, he then developed a personal language that is enriched with metaphorical allusions. Appreciated by Bruno Munari but also by Pierre Restany, he has exhibited in various parts of the world, never ceasing to experiment with new solutions. In a recent exhibition in Turin, 100% Italy: 100 years of masterpieces (21 September 2018 – 10 February 2019) his works were presented for their contribution to the development of the art of the twentieth century.

Keywords: Art History – Paolo Scirpa – Ludoscopes – Light calligraphy – Italy

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 121-139


Frailty and transcendence in the exodal anthropology of Madeleine Delbrêl (Edi Natali)

Abstract: This article comes almost as an extract from my book Madeleine Delbrêl. Frailty and transcendence, the result of my doctoral research, in which I outlined the delbrêlian anthropology and spirituality: an “exodal” anthropology, which finds its peculiar character in frailty, and a spirituality that is embodied in the feriality of existence.

Keywords: Frailty – Transcendence – Anthropology – Delbrêl – Spirituality

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 141-151

Mary and the pres-ent. For a Trinitarian exegesis of the Word. Ontological insights into the New Testament Greek of the koinè (Rosario Cerciello)

Abstract: Can silence say about Being? God spoke to the prophets; but Mary’s unicum appears immanent to the fact, because it is the Act that determines its time, so as to be able to define a Via Trinitatis in Maria. She, ‘Trinitarian Pause’, participating in that present, lives as a Mother, like a silence that interrupts the Sound, generating the non-sound that becomes rhythm (‘family life’): She is a ‘pause’ of/of sound, for the voice of God to burst forth from eternity in a suspended instant (μεταξὺ): between ‘the eternal of Being’ and ‘the present of Being’. The Pres-Ent of/in Maria.

Keywords: Mary – Silence of Being – Trinitarian Pause – Pres-Ent – Via Trinitatis

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 153-167

Democratic societies under the spell of the culture of fear: the perspective of Martha C. Nussbaum and Pope Francis (Valerio Aversano)

Abstract: Fear seems to be one of the typical features of modern life, emerging as a ‘culture’ and a perspective for interpreting life. After a brief discussion on Martha Nussbaum’s perspective on the role of fear in our societies, this article analyses the vision of fear that emerges from Fratelli tutti with reference to what Pope Francis calls the “culture of walls”. Next, it addresses the idea and practice of fraternity in the encyclical: can it constitute an “antidote” to the culture of fear?

Keywords: Fear – Fratelli tutti – Fraternity – Nussbaum – Walls

Read full article in English: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 169-181


Etty Hillesum: From self-opening to humanity (Camila Bortolato Putarov)

Abstract: Etty Hillesum’s spiritual journey is characterized by an encounter with what mystics call the depths of the soul, the deepest and most intimate locus of the subject. Discovering the superabundance of love received from God, she also discovers herself called to give herself entirely to humanity to the point of self-forgetfulness. In such a way Etty Hillesum experiences a profound unity with herself, with God and with each other.

Keywords: Cosmology – Transcendence – Self-knowledge – Self-giving – Spiritual journey

Read full article in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 183-198


When the intelligence of the Agápe becomes what it is: intelligence from the crucified Agápe (Eduard Prenga)

Il pensare crocefisso. L’esperienza di Francesco a La Verna nell’Itinerarium di Bonaventura di T. Bertolasi (Città Nuova, 2022)

Abstract: The book of Tommaso Bertolasi revolves around the phenomenology of reciprocity between experience and cognition. The goal of these lines is more than being just a book review. Instead, they represent an invitation and a recommendation:

– An invitation to delve into Bonaventure’s way of thinking in the light of his own texts, for which the figure of St. Francis serves as measure and method.

– A recommendation for the dialogic continuation of the innovative perspectives, hermeneutically disclosed through the research of Bertolasi.

Keywords: Medieval Philosophy – Phenomenology – Itinerarium – Bonaventure – Crucified

Read the full review in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 199-204

Alius in alio, quia non aliud in utroque. Unity as the distinguishing mark of Trinitarian relational theo-ontology (Robert Cheaib)

Unità. Metafisica, teologia, cosmologia, (Dizionario Dinamico di Ontologia Trinitaria, 3) a cura di M. Marianelli ed E. Pili (Città Nuova, 2022)

Abstract: The guiding principle that transpires from the three essays of Massimo Donà, Piero Coda and Carmelo Meazza starts from the divine unity, affirmed fundamentally in the language of relationship. The Trinity is the «One that is distinct» (K. Hemmerle). Such unitas Trinitatis constitutes the arx omnis unitatis. The economic gesture manifests this distinction and self-giving of the divine unity as agape that gives itself and “alienates” itself. It is precisely this self-alienation that enables the unity between Creator and creature.

Keywords: Trinity – Philosophy – Theology – Otherness

Read the full review in Italian: «Sophia» XV (2023-1) 205-209

«Sophia», Year XV (2023), Issue 2: will be published in Decembre 2023

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