Anna Motta has obtained her Degrees in Classical Studies and Ancient Philology at the University of Naples “Federico II (2006 and 2008) and her PhD in Philosophy at the University of Salerno (2012). She spent part of her Doctoral course at the Graduate School of Ancient Philosohy at the Humboldt University of Berlin (2010-2011) and she won a research scholarship at the Fondation Hardt (Vandœuvres - Switzerland) in November 2015. She is “Cultore della Materia” at the chair of Ancient Philosophy at the University of Naples “Federico II” and since November 2015 she has a Fellowship at the Dahlem Research School of the Freie Universität of Berlin in the focus area of the Exellence Cluster TOPOI.
Her research field is addressed to Ancient and Late Antique Philosophy. The historical development of philosophy has influenced her since she has started to study texts which read and explain the birth of Platonism from the dialogue of different philosophies. In fact, her MA thesis work in Classical Philology focused on pointing out the innovation of the reception of Ancient Greek epistemological theories in the Academica of Cicero with a specific attention to the use of Cicero’s acquisitions in Christian Late Anquity. It was a philological and philosophical work conducted on Greek and Latin texts of different ages and spheres.
Her PhD dissertation in Philosophy, part of which is now a book (Prolegomeni alla Filosofia di Platone, Armando editore, Roma 2014), shows the birth of a metaphysical teaching of Plato developed from the harmonization of the different Ancient philosophical and religious traditions. In order to do this, for the first time she made the Greek text of “Anonymous Prolegomena to Platonic Philosophy” (VI A.D.) available in Italian. It was a comparative and exegetic study through Greek and Latin texts in order to demonstrate the innovations of the philosophy of Late Antiquity, especially those of the Alexandrian school where the Anonymous lived and through a philosophical text which had been ignored for a long time by scholars of different times and countries.
She has written articles especially about Neoplatonism, in which different philosophies and religious traditions get on well together and become harmonized under the name of Plato, and she has taken part in Internatonal conferences during which she has been able to stress the importance of her research for the acquisition of the studies in Neoplatonism.
Nature of the cosmos and nature of the account in Neoplatonism
The skopos of the Timaeus is not simply physiology because nature is strictly linked to the Demiurge and the Word Soul, and this relation points out that physis depends on theology. In Neoplatonism nature is a mediator, a transitional hypostasis, between the world of generation and the intelligible realm like that philosophical accounts which are similar to the cosmos and in as much as imitators of the things they signify they are also interpreters of that of which they are similar to, namely they are tools that lead upwards by stimulating the acknowledgement of likeness and unlikeness. Through the discussion of the concepts of likeness and unlikeness in such a cosmological context and simultaneously in that literary, new observations turn out to be of a paramount importance: it will be stressed that the literary cosmos is ruled by the same principles that rule the universe-macrosmos. Furthermore, the existence of a relationship among reality, knowledge and account will emphasize that the study of nature cannot be disconnected from theology and that at the same time the literary theory cannot be disconnected from the development of the Neoplatonic metaphysics: the representation of the dialogical cosmos is grounded on the concept that the Neoplatonists have of the world and the use of the accountsis grounded on the perception of that similarity that links us to the universe.
3. The Visible Cosmos of Dialogues. Some Historical and Philosophical Remarks about Plato in the Late Antique Schools, «Revista Archai. As Origines do pensamento ocidental» 12 (2014), pp. 11-18.
4. Gli antecedenti storici del Platonismo: il ruolo dei Presocratici secondo i Neoplatonici, «Peitho. Examina Antiqua» 1/5 (2014), pp. 43-58.
5. L’ekphrasis del discorso: una lezione neoplatonica sul miglior artefatto, «Estetica. Studi e ricerche» 1 (2013), pp. 186-200.
6. L’anima alata di Platone e la sua missione soteriologica. Esegesi neoplatoniche sul Fedro, «ΚΟΙΝΩΝΙΑ» 37 (2013), pp. 43-59.
7. Socrate, i discorsi e gli agalmata theon: l’interno del Simposio di Platone, «Vichiana» 15/2 (2013), pp. 6-18.
8. Immagini di Bellezza. Questioni di metafisica neoplatonica, «Филозофија/Filozofija - A Journal of Philosophical Inquiry» 35/2 (2013), pp. 27-42.
9. La tarda scuola neoplatonica di Alessandria: aspetti dell’Introduzione alla filosofia di Platone, «Atene e Roma» n.s. 5 (2011), pp. 35-46.
Essays and Proceedings from Conferences
1. La Sibilla di Eraclito e l’ispirazione del filosofo: i neo-contesti citatori del frammento DK22B92, in I. Pozzoni (a cura di), L’oscurità di Eraclito d'Efeso. Frammenti e «leggenda», Limina Mentis, Villasanta 2014, pp. 209-233.
2. Socratismo neoplatonico o neoplatonismo socratico? Alcune considerazioni sulla figura di Socrate nella tarda antichità, in F. de Luise - A. Stavru (eds.), Socratica III. Studies on Socrates, the Socratics, and the Ancient Socratic Literature, Academia Verlag, Sankt Augustin 2013, pp. 354-361.
3. Eros ἀναγωγός e filosofia nell’esegesi tardo neoplatonica, in V. Sorge e L. Palumbo (a cura di), Eros e Pulchritudo. Tra Antico e Moderno, La scuola di Pitagora editrice, Napoli 2012, pp. 71-82.
2. H. Dörrie † - M. Baltes † - C. Pietsch, Die philosophische Lehre des Platonismus. Theologia Platonica I. Bausteine 182-205: Text, Übersetzung, Kommentar (Der Platonismus in der Antike. Grundlagen – System – Entwicklung, begründet von H. Dörrie †, forgeführt von M. Baltes † und C. Pietsch, Band 7). Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt 2008, pp. XVII + 645, «Atene e Roma» 5 (2011), pp. 88-94.
3. L. Rossetti e A. Stavru, Socratica 2005. Studi sulla letteratura socratica antica, Bari, Levante ed. (“Le Rane” 52), 2008, pp. 383, «Atene e Roma» 5 (2011), pp. 134-140.
4. V. Napoli, Ἐπέκεινα τοῦ ἑνός. Il principio totalmente ineffabile tra dialettica ed esegesi in Damascio, «Schola Salernitana» 14-15 (2009-2010), pp. 388-395.