Mr Ruggero Sciuto

Mr Ruggero Sciuto, B.A. (Pisa) M.Phil. (Oxford)

Research

In my D.Phil. thesis I examine the inner workings of Denis Diderot and Paul-Henri Thiry d’Holbach’s theory of determinism, and I analyse how the two philosophers’ ideas about morality and epistemology are affected by their commitment to this theory. My work situates Diderot and d’Holbach relative to key figures in medieval and early modern philosophy, including Aquinas, Hobbes, Spinoza, Leibniz, and Hume. My main contention is that, whilst in many ways original and innovative, the philosophy of Diderot and d’Holbach – two openly atheist thinkers – is in fact deeply rooted in the Christian tradition. Thus, my study engages with one of the liveliest ongoing debates in eighteenth-century studies: to what extent is Jonathan Israel justified in asserting the ‘radicalism’ of Enlightenment thought?

Besides working on my DPhil thesis, I am a contributor to the Voltaire Foundation’s edition of the Complete Works of Voltaire and I am also working to analyse and publicise the rich yet little-known archives of the diplomat and cultural mediator, Luigi Lorenzi.

I am also the coordinator of the TORCH Network on Diplomacy in the Early Modern Period (1400-1800), a research center that examines early modern ambassadors’ diplomatic, networking, and cultural activities.

 

Publications

R. Sciuto, Voltaire et Johann Baptist Anton von Pergen : cinq lettres inédites (juillet-août 1753), in Revue d’Histoire Littéraire de la France (scheduled to be published in 2019);

Voltaire, Représentation aux Etats de l’Empire, ed. by R. Sciuto, in Œuvres Complètes de Voltaire, vol. 29, Oxford: Voltaire Foundation (scheduled to be published in 2019);

A. M. de Noailles, Observations sur l’Introduction aux Campagnes du Roi de M. de Voltaire, ed. by R. Sciuto, in Œuvres Complètes de Voltaire, vol. 29, Oxford: Voltaire Foundation (scheduled to be published in 2019);

Voltaire, Réponse à Monsieur le Duc de Bouillon, ed. by R. Sciuto, in Œuvres Complètes de Voltaire, vol. 78B (Commentaire Historique sur les Œuvres de l’Auteur de La Henriade), Oxford: Voltaire Foundation (scheduled to be published in 2018);

R. Sciuto, The Duc de Richelieu, Voltaire, and Mme du Barry: an Unpublished Letter from the Cabinet Noir (D18516a), in Revue Voltaire, 17 (2017), pp. 309-314;

R. Sciuto, The Correspondence of André Morellet: Seven Unpublished Letters to Luigi Lorenzi (1758-1765), in Archivio Storico Italiano, 174 (2016), pp. 499-522;

R. Sciuto, Review of “Fougeret de Monbron, Margot la ravaudeuse, edited and translated by E. Langille, Cambridge: The Modern Humanities Research Association, 2015”, in French Studies, 70, 4 (2016), pp. 599-600;

C. M. de La Condamine, Les Quand adressés au Sr Palissot, ed. by R. Sciuto, in Œuvres Complètes de Voltaire, vol. 51A (Writings of 1760), Oxford: Voltaire Foundation, 2015, pp. 407-422;

R. Sciuto, L’imbarazzo del Naturalista e del Metafisico: Voltaire e le implicazioni filosofiche di un esperimento condotto da Lazzaro Spallanzani sulla rigenerazione della testa delle lumache terrestri, in Nel nome di Lazzaro. Saggi di storia della scienza e delle istituzioni scientifiche tra il XVII e il XVIII secolo, Bologna: Pendragon, 2014, pp. 245-258;

contributed four unpublished letters to the Edizione Nazionale delle Opere di Ruggiero Giuseppe Boscovich, Milan: 2008-;

contributed one unpublished letter to the Edizione Nazionale del Carteggio di Lodovico Antonio Muratori.

 

Conference and seminar papers

‘Luigi Lorenzi e Charles Marie de La Condamine: analisi di un carteggio (1755-1765)’, La Diplomatie des lettres au XVIIIe siècle – Joint Conference of the Société Française d’Etude du Dix-Huitième Siècle and the Società Italiana di Studi sul Secolo XVIII, Paris, 7-9 December 2017;

‘Emilie Du Châtelet and the Three Leibnizian Versions of the Principle of Sufficient Reason’, Forschungskolloquien “History of Women Philosophers and Scientists”, Universität Paderborn (Germany), 27 June 2017;

‘Diderot and d’Holbach on Causal Necessitation’, Besterman Enlightenment Workshop, Voltaire Foundation, Oxford,16 January 2017;

‘Ambasciatori e ministri residenti nella Repubblica delle Lettere: il caso Lorenzi (1705-1766)’, Interim Conference of the Society for Italian Studies, Trinity College, Dublin, 29-30 April 2016;

‘Does Madness Represent a Threat in a Deterministic Universe? Diderot and d’Holbach Answer’, Oxford French Graduate Seminar, All Souls College, Oxford, 26 April 2016;

‘A New Work by Voltaire: the Représentation aux Etats de l’Empire’, 45th Annual Conference of the British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, St. Hugh’s College, Oxford, 7 January 2016;

‘The Principle of Sufficient Reason, Emilie du Châtelet and… an anonymous Encyclopédiste’, Emilie du Châtelet Study Day, Ertegun House, Oxford, 14 May 2015;

‘Causation in Eighteenth-Century France (How-to)’, Early Modern French Seminar: Graduate Research Showcase, Maison Française d’Oxford, Oxford, 19 February 2015;

‘Universalism and Particularism in d’Holbach’s Système de la Nature’, 44th Annual Conference of the British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, St. Hugh’s College, Oxford, 8 January 2015;

‘Voltaire e Lazzaro Spallanzani: nuove direttive di ricerca’, Book launch of Nel nome di Lazzaro. Saggi di storia della scienza e delle istituzioni scientifiche tra il XVII e il XVIII secolo, Bologna: Pendragon, 2014, Scandiano (Reggio Emilia), 28 November 2014;

‘On the permeability of both the categories of Antiquity and Modernity in Leopardi’s thought’, Post-Graduate Training Programme in Italian Studies, School of Advanced Studies, London, 29 November 2013.

Subscribe to Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages