What is Renaissance magic? What connects the seemingly very different enterprises of Marsilio Ficino (De vita libri tres), Cornelius Agrippa, Giordano Bruno (De vinculis), Giovan Battista della Porta (Magia naturalis) and Francis Bacon? In what sense their projects of a natural magic are about the same thing?
Imagine a course which combines, in an imaginative manner, philosophy, art history, literature and a lot of discussions about how to see and understand famous painting. Imagine looking at beautiful paintings -- by Boticelli, Raphael and Pierro della Francesca – and learning how to look and what to search for in them.
If you are new in the field, or simply not up to date with the new trends in Ficinian studies, this is the place to begin. Sophia Howlett offers a clearly written and daring revisionist story of Renaissance; one set to deconstruct most of our cherished myths. Based on a wide survey of the recent (and less recent) scholarship, Marsilio Ficino and his world tells an alternative story to the celebrated fairy tale of the Platonic Academy of Florence and the recovery of Plato’s works in Western Europe.