The Debate of the Academy of the Ricovrati

in The Contest for Knowledge

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print May 2005 | ISBN: 9780226010540
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226010564 | DOI:
The Debate of the Academy of the Ricovrati

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  • Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)


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This chapter focuses on the debate in the Ricovrati Academy in Padua regarding the education of women of the common masses in sciences and the liberal arts. In his introduction to the proceedings, Antonio Vallisneri, head of the Academy, declared the academy's objective in the debate. The debaters, Guglielmo Camposanpiero (1691–1765), poet, scholar, and chief librarian at the University of Padua, and Giovanni Antonio Volpi, a noted scholar, publisher, and professor of philosophy, Greek, and Latin at the University, generally adhered to the conventions of the querelle des femmes. Camposanpiero rested his defense of women's education on a catalog of celebrated and accomplished women already conventional to the genre, from Aspasia to Isabella Andreini, and cited arguments that he deemed sympathetic toward women made by the patriarchs of the Western cultural canon from Plato to Bembo. Volpi, by contrast, relied heavily on ancient humoralism.

Keywords: Ricovrati Academy; women's education; Antonio Vallisneri; Guglielmo Camposanpiero; querelle des femmes; Giovanni Antonio Volpi

Chapter.  16021 words. 

Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)

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