Graduate Students

Marta Cerreti earned a laurea (2017) and a Master degree (2019) with honors, in Philosophy from Sapienza Università di Roma. In her first year of MA she won a scholarship to study Philosophy and Literature in Ireland, at University College Dublin. In her dissertation titled Feeling a Stranger at Home: An Itinerary Between Philosophy and Literature, Marta explored one of the most significant philosophical questions – the one about identity and recognition – starting by the perusal of literary texts, showing her attitude for comparative studies. In 2019 Marta received a scholarship awarded by the Istituto Italiano per gli Studi Filosofici in Naples, where she had the opportunity to contribute to a collective work with a short essay on Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World and the cinema of attractions.

At Hopkins, Cerreti investigates the link between narrativity and identity, with a focus on Contemporary women’s writing in Italy, thus connecting the interests expressed in her final dissertation in a new interdisciplinary trajectory rooted in her strong cultural and linguistic Italian experience. She aims at expanding her research by exploring the work of writers such as Ferrante, Ortese, Morante, Ginzburg, Ramondino, all authors who seem to reclaim the necessity to lose one’s margins (Ferrante’s “smarginatura” and Ortese’s “frantumazione”). In her research, Marta would like to bridge Italian Studies, with the Program in Philosophy, Cinema Studies and Gender Studies. In the past, Marta has worked for cultural magazines, writing articles in the literary section. She likewise has worked as operator in an anti-violence centre and this experience has given her the opportunity to expand her studies with activist initiatives.

Silvia Raimondi 

earned a Bachelor’s degree (2015) and a Master’s degree (2016) with honors, in Italian Language and Literature at the University of Roma Tre. An extract from her first thesis (“Il poeta di teatro di Filippo Pananti: notazioni lessicali”), which focuses on the history of the Italian language, has been published in the Italian journal «Scaffale aperto» by Carocci editore. She has taught Italian and history in a school in the city of Como, and she obtained the DITALS certification, to teach Italian Language as a Foreign Language, from the Università per Stranieri di Siena.

At Hopkins, her current research focuses on modern and contemporary Italian literature and cinema, and women’s and gender studies. She has done extensive research on postwar Italian literature dealing with the anti-fascist movement, with a focus on the work of the writer partisan Beppe Fenoglio. While expaning her research on Fenoglio and on the representation of the figure of the «non-combatant» in the anti-fascist resistance literature, she is also exploring the work of other writers such as Elsa Morante, Italo Calvino, Cesare Pavese, Elio Vittorini, Luigi Meneghello, and Renata Viganò. Moreover, she is interested in studying the ways the resistance has been represented in Italian cinema and continues to be revisited in recent documentary films directed by women directors, addressing women’s participation in History.

Lorenzo Filippo Bacchini earned a bachelor’s degree in literature and philosophy at the University of Bologna, and a master’s in journalism and a master of arts in Italian studies at Columbia University. His primary interest is in medieval and Renaissance Italian literature, but he is also interested in other countries’ literature, as well as history and cinema. Before coming to Johns Hopkins, he worked as a journalist in Rome, as a press agent for a cinematographic house of production in Bologna, and has taught in various different settings including Italy, India, and Ghana. He also has experience as an author and poet, having published several poems, some short stories, and two short movies in Italy.

Alberto Fabris is a former Ph.D. student in philosophy at the École Normale Supérieure de Lyon (2014-2017). He will defend this year a thesis about the concept of desire in Giordano Bruno philosophy. He was élève de la Sélection Internationale de l’École Normale Supérieure de Paris in the department of philosophy. In 2013, he obtained his Master 1 in history of philosophy at the university of Paris-Sorbonne with a dissertation on Bruno’s De la causa, principio et uno and his Master 2 (2014) in political studies at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales with a thesis on Machiavelli’s theory about the flux of political forms. During the past few years, he worked on the natural and the political philosophy of the Renaissance, on the art of memory and on several XVI century authors. He published an article about Montaigne’s reflection on death and about Ariosto’s echoes in Bruno. In addition to the Renaissance, he’s interested in political thought, theory of literature, feminism, psychanalysis and 1960s and 1970s authors.

Audrey Fastuca earned her degree in philosophy and art history at the George Washington University.  After an extended period of living in Naples, she became fascinated with “The Southern Question,” in particular, how the perception of a primitive, pre-industrialized Southern Italy was constructed in literature, film, and documentary.  Her research has a regional-focus and centers on the cultural exportation of the South via 19th and 20th-century literature and documentary film, blending methods of anthropological inquiry and eco-criticism in order to consider the influences of dialect, cultural expression, and environmental context.

Denis Forasacco

Catherine Freddo

Chiara Girardi her MA from Boston College in 2015. During her time at BC, she was the recipient of  the Donald J. White Award for Excellence in Teaching and the  S.L. Nguyen Summer  Research Grant, which allowed her to do research on operatic theaters at the Biblioteca Casanatense in Rome. While at Johns Hopkins, she was awarded the Velli Prize for the Best Graduate Essay by the American Boccaccio Association for her work “European Reaction to the Beauty and Wealth of Saracen Women”, which will be published on Heliotropia. She is now a third year PhD student in Italian at Johns Hopkins University, specializing in language debates, gender studies and the reception of antiquity. Her secondary interests include the intersection of music and literature and Mediterranean studies.

Alessio Panichi graduated in philosophy from the University of Pisa in October 2005 with a thesis on Giordano Bruno’s philosophy. In July 2009, he obtained his PhD from the National Institute for Renaissance Studies (Florence) by defending a thesis on Giordano Bruno’s polemic against the myth of the Golden Age. Over the last eight years, Panichi was postdoctoral fellow of both the Department of Civilizations and Forms of Knowledge at the University of Pisa and some German institutions, e.g. Herzog August Bibliothek, Leibniz Institut für Europäische Geschichte, Johannes a Lasco Bibliothek, and the Forschungszentrum Gotha der Universität Erfurt. His research activity has been focusing so far on the history of political thought, particularly on the interplay between religion, politics, and philosophy in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century culture, as well as on the political ideas in twentieth-century Italy. During his research periods in Italy and Germany, Panichi worked on different features of such topics and wrote several articles on Tommaso Campanella, Kaspar Schoppe, Norberto Bobbio, and Luigi Firpo. He is also the author of a book concerning Campanella’s political thinking (Il volto fragile del potere. Religione e politica nel pensiero di Tommaso Campanella, Pisa, ETS, 2015).

Beatrice Variolo

Alberto Luca Zuliani earned a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in Italian Literature at the University of Turin with a dissertation on the twentieth-century poet Mario Luzi. His current research focuses on the forms and modes of literary representation of the divinity in the Italian Renaissance, with particular reference to the implications that the rendition of divine speech suggests in terms of limits and possibilities of the poetic word in the Christian epic tradition (Vida, Sannazaro, Tasso, Milton). An interest in the stylistic features of poetry also informs his research on both Renaissance and twentieth-century lyric poets. Other areas of interest include the intersection between politics and literature, politics and cinema, and the use of laughter in literature.