Vico and Naples: The Urban Origins of Modern Social Theory by Barbara Ann NaddeoVico and Naples: The Urban Origins of Modern Social Theory by Barbara Ann Naddeo

Vico and Naples: The Urban Origins of Modern Social Theory

byBarbara Ann Naddeo

Hardcover | February 3, 2011

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Vico and Naples is an intellectual portrait of the Neapolitan philosopher Giambattista Vico (1668–1744) that reveals the politics and motivations of one of Europe's first scientists of society. According to the commonplaces of the literature on the Neapolitan, Vico was a solitary figure who, at a remove from the political life of his larger community, steeped himself in the recondite debates of classical scholarship to produce his magnum opus, the New Science. Barbara Ann Naddeo shows, however, that at the outset of his career Vico was deeply engaged in the often-tumultuous life of his great city and that his experiences of civic crises shaped his inquiry into the origins and development of human society.

With its attention to Vico's historical, rhetorical, and jurisprudential texts, this book recovers a Vico who was keenly attuned to the social changes transforming the political culture of his native city. He understood the crisis of the city's corporate social order and described the new social groupings that would shape its future. In Naddeo's pages, Vico comes alive as a prescient judge of his city and the political conundrum of Europe’s burgeoning metropolises. He was dedicated to the acknowledgment and juridical remedy of Naples’ vexing social divisions and ills. Naddeo also presents biographical vignettes illuminating Vico’s role as a Professor of Rhetoric at the University of Naples and his bid for the prestigious Morning Chair of Civil Law, which foundered on the directives of the Habsburgs and the politics of his native city. Rich with period detail, this book is a compelling and vivid reconstruction of Vico’s life and times and of the origins of his powerful notion of the social.

Barbara Ann Naddeo is Associate Professor of History at CUNY: The City College of New York.
Title:Vico and Naples: The Urban Origins of Modern Social TheoryFormat:HardcoverDimensions:312 pages, 9.25 × 6.13 × 0.39 inPublished:February 3, 2011Publisher:Cornell University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0801449162

ISBN - 13:9780801449161

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Vico and Naples
1. The Origins of Vico's Social Theory: Vichian Reflections on the Neapolitan Revolt of 1701 and the Politics of the Metropolis
2. Vico's Cosmopolitanism: Global Citizenship and Natural Law in Vico's Pedagogical Thought
3. Vico's Social Theory: The Conundrum of the Roman Metropolis and the Struggle of Humanity for Natural Rights
4. From Social Theory to Philosophy: Vico's Disillusions with the Neapolitan Magistracy and the New Frontier of Philosophy

Note on References and Translations
Sources Cited

Editorial Reviews

"A book such as Vico and Naples is long overdue. Barbara Ann Naddeo places Vico squarely within both the intellectual debates and the historical and political circumstances of eighteenth-century Naples. Naddeo treats Vico as a politically engaged individual, and the result is a fascinating and very believable argument about one of the most innovative thinkers of his time. It is also an illuminating explanation of what Vico meant by what he said. This is intellectual history at its best."—Helena Rosenblatt, The Graduate Center, CUNY