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Workshop of Critical Social Philosophy

Francesca Paola Di Lorenzo

Scientific research and teaching activity

Workshop of Critical Social Philosophy


Profile and publications


Razionalità, verità e mente

Francesca Di Lorenzo (ed.), Razionalità, verità e mente (Rationality, Truth, and Mind), Milano, Mondadori 2008


This book investigates the crucial paradigmatic changes of the concepts of rationality, truth and mind after the epistemological breakdowns of the first half of the Twentieth Century.

Starting from the overcoming of ideas such as truth as correspondence, mind as separated from world and body, reason as separated from social and discursive practices, and from the recognition of the conceptual character of our perceptions, the book aims at making explicit the necessary and complex relationships between rationality, truth and mind and to work out the model of a plastic mind, able at fitting the world and transforming it. It also aims at letting emerge the normative constraints underlying reason, linking “truth” to the specific deontic commitments which are constitutive of speech acts.With contributions of John R. Searle, Luigi Ruggiu, Paolo Parrini, Christopher Hookway, Francesca Di Lorenzo Ajello, Sandro Gulì, Claudia Rosciglione, Giuseppe Vicari, Giancarlo Zanet.

Mente, azione e linguaggio nel pensiero di John R. Searle


Francesca Di Lorenzo, Mente, azione e linguaggio nel pensiero di John R. Searle (Mind, Action, and Language in John R. Searle's Thought), Franco Angeli, Milano 20012


The challenge of a non-dualistic and non-Cartesian return to the mental came to be grounded, in Searle’s work, on the recent and crucial achievements of his speech acts theory and of his theory of the holistic structure of meaning and reference, systematically developed along the biologistic and naturalistic lines of the late Wittgenstein.

This book goes into the details of a critical examination of this challenge and tests it against the crucial test-bed which is given, for every mentalistic perspective, by the capacity to avoid Cartesian, solipsistic outcomes. It also tests its capacity, developed in multiple dimensions, to dialogue with the most fruitful urgencies of contemporary debate as they are represented by Habermas and Apel, Kripke, Putnam and Rorty.

Going into the details of this debate, in part not wholly known to the Italian audience, and which has often in Searle’s provocative theoretical proposals its reference point, the book points out the fruitfulness of a theoretical perspectivewhich comes to work out a new biological-transactional program capable of including opposed theoretical positions – from Frege’s intentionalist theory and the new causal theory of reference, from the traditional correspondence theory of truth and the new theory of rational acceptability.  

Conoscenza e immaginazione nel pensiero di Theodor W. Adorno


Francesca Di Lorenzo, Conoscenza e immaginazione nel pensiero di Theodor W. Adorno (Knowledge and Imagination in Theodor W. Adorno's Thought), Carocci, Roma 20012


The research of a dialectic logic, capable of including the contradiction and the “excluded third” comes to be specified in Adorno’s work as, at the same time, a gnoseological and ethical research.

It is, in fact, the proposal of a logic underlying a hermeneutical-dialectic strategy for the knowledge of reality, which is capable of working on the “waste products”, which are anomalous and incoherent with respect to the accepted explanatory schemes, and to restructure them into explanatory constellations, removing them from their isolation.

In ethics, then, an ethics centered on the problem of the inclusion of the different comes to substitute the ethic centered on equality.

This is a somehow surprising aspect of a philosophical thought still generally little known relative to those aspects more closely linking it to current reflections on the role played by paradoxical and anomalous notions in the stages of “transformation” of knowledge.

Papers and book chapters

Normativity and Collective Recognition in Searle's Account of Language and Institutions, accepted for publication in “Paradigmi”, I (2015).

Esperire mimetico e razionalità nel modello adorniano di rapporto mente–mondo (Mimetic Experience and Rationality in Adorno’s Model of Mind-World Relationship), in “Giornale di Metafisica”, I (2014), pp. 233-246.


Sources and Boundaries of Institutional and Linguistic Normativity: Towards a Critical Social Ontology, in “Proceedings of the Grios Conference 2011 on ‘The Nature of Social Reality’”, Università della Calabria, Arcavata di Rende, October 13-14, 2011, C. Stancati, E. Fadda, R. Giovagnoli e A. Givigliano (eds.), Cambridge S. P., 2013.


The Role of Searle’s Constitutive Rules for the Rational Criticizability of Institutional Reality. Abstract of the contribution to the Third International Conference of the European Network on Social Ontology, University of Helsinki, 23rd-25th october 2013.  


Diritti umani e libertà di espressione. La priorità del principio della inviolabilità della "dignità umana" nella Dichiarazione universale dei diritti umani e le sue implicazioni per una possibile "regolazione" della libertà di parola (Human Rights and Freedom of Expression. The priority of the principle of the inviolability of “human dignity” in the universal Declaration of human rights and its implications for a possible “regulation” of free speech), in La Cittadella. Rivista dell'Associazione Culturale ELIOS, 2012, atti del Convegno su "Libertà di parola. Nè conformisti nè anticonformmisti: pensanti", Capaci (PA), 22 ottobre 2011.


Sources and Boundaries of Institutional and Linguistic Normativity. Towards a Critical Social Ontology. Abstract of the contribution to the International Conference Grios 2011 on “The Nature of Social Reality”, Università della Calabria, Arcavacata di Rende, 13th-14th october 2011,

Sources and Boundaries of Institutional and Linguistic Normativity. Towards a Critical Social Ontology. Abstract of the contribution to the International Conference of the European Network on Social Ontology “ENSO 2011”, Luiss Guido Carli University, Roma, Italy, 21st-23rd september 2011,

Perception, Normativity and Action in Contemporary Philosophy of Mind and Cognitive Science. Abstract of the contribution to the International Conference of the Italian Society for Analytic Philosophy, Alghero, Italy, 12-15 september 2011,

Towards a Theory of Cognitive Responsibility: Action, Perception and Normativity from Plato to Searle. Abstract of the contribution to the International Conference of the European Society for Analytic Philosophy “ECAP 7”, Milano, Università San Raffaele - Università di Milano, 1st-6th september 2011.


Giustificazione epistemica e responsabilità cognitiva nel Teeteto (Epistemic Justification and Cognitive Responsibility in the Theaetetus), in L. Cortella, F. Mora e I. Testa (a c.di), La socialità della ragione. Scritti in onore di L. Ruggiu (The Sociality of Reason. Essays in Honor of L. Ruggiu), Mimesis, Filosofia, Collana diretta da Pierre Dalla Vigna e Luca Taddio, Milano- Udine 2011, Collana diretta da Pierre Dalla Vigna e Luca Taddio, pp. 75-87


L'episteme e la sua giustificabilità razionale nella terza definizione del Teeteto. Verso una teoria della responsabilità cognitiva (The Episteme and its Rational Justifiability in the Third Definition of Theaetetus. Towards a Theory of Cognitive Responsibility), in G. Mazzara, V. Napoli (eds.), Platone. La teoria del sogno del Teeteto, Atti del Convegno Internazionale su La teoria del sogno e la terza sezione del Teeteto, Palermo 2008, Sankt Augustin, Academia Verlag (Studies in Ancient Philosophy, 9), 2010, pp. 81-99  


Vincoli universali del linguaggio e impegni deontici nella costruzione della realtà sociale (Universal Constraints of Language and Deontic Commitments in the Construction of Social Reality), in L. Ruggiu, I. Testa (eds.), Lo spazio sociale della ragione, "Atti del convegno internazionale su Hegel contemporaneo II", Venezia, settembre 2006, Milano, Mimesis 2009, 423-46


La mente in azione (Mind in action), Prefazione a J. R. Searle, Coscienza, linguaggio, società, a cura di U. Perone, Torino, Rosenberg&Sellier 2009


Mutamenti paradigmatici e nuovi modelli nel dibattito contemporaneo su razionalità, verità e mente (Paradigmatic changes and new models in the contemporary debate on rationality, truth and mind), in EAD. (ed. by) Razionalità, verità e mente (Rationality, Truth, and Mind), Milano 2008, Mondadori, pp. 1-30. 

Adorno e il “divieto linguistico” (Sprachverbot) beckettiano: possibilità e limiti della comunicazione come pratica della differenza nel pensiero di Theodor W. Adorno (Adorno and Beckett’s “Linguistic prohibition”: possibilities and limitations of communication as practice of difference in Theodor W. Adorno’s thought), in “Atti del convegno su Theodor W. Adorno. L’estetica, l’etica, l’industria culturale”, Mario Signore and Paolo Pellegrino (eds.), in “Idee, Rivista di Filosofia”, 58, Lecce 2005, Milella.


La priorità della giustizia come epieikeia in Aristotele e Rawls (The Priority of Justice as Epieikeia in Aristotle and Rawls), in "Annali del Dipartimento di Filosofia, Storia e Critica dei Saperi", Palermo 2004, Publisicula, pp. 67-76


Etica e conoscenza (Ethics and Knowledge), in Cultura tedesca, Donzelli, 2004


On the dichotomy between cognitive judgements and value judgments: speech acts and commitments, in “Atti del convegno internazionale su ‘Normatività, Fatti, Valori. Normativity Facts, Values’, Roma 28-30 ottobre 1999, R. Egidi, M. Dell’Utri and M. De Caro (eds.), Macerata 2003, Quodlibet; 


Giudizi di valore e pretese di validità: implicazioni deontiche della Speech Acts Theory (Value Judgements and Validity Claims: Deontic Implications of Speech Acts Theory), in S. Nicosia (ed.), Il giudizio, Carocci 2000.


Enigma e conoscenza nel pensiero di Friedrich Nietzsche. Nota sul frammento 6[49]'80 (Enigma and Knowledge in Friedrich Nietzsche's Thought. Not on Fragment 6[49]'80), 1995, inedito, ora pubblicato come Postfazione a Conoscenza e immaginazione, Carocci 2001


Dislocamento (Verschiebung) della contraddittorietà sociale ed obsolescenza dell’economia politica nella teoria della società di Theodor W. Adorno (Dislocation of social contradiction and obsolescence of political economy in Theodor W. Adorno’s  theory of society), in Atti del convegno su “Società civile e società politica da Hegel alla Scuola di Francoforte”, Siracusa 1987, Ediprint;

Dialettica negativa e musica atonale: nota su Theodor W. Adorno (Negative dialectic and atonal music: a note on Theodor W. Adorno), in Atti del convegno su “Adorno in Italia”, Siracusa 1987, Ediprint;


Spinoza e la difficoltà speculativa di risolvere le azioni degli uomini negli appetiti che le determinano, in “Quaderni di Filosofia”, Palermo 1980, Ila Palma