Paolo Palmieri, Associate Professor (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I am a humanist, a historian, and a philosopher. I focus on the traditions that shaped the values of modernity. I am fascinated by the creativity processes at the crossroads of art, the natural and humane sciences, and technology. My most recent work is in hearing and sound, and the history and philosophy of learning.
Education and Work
2002 PhD History and Philosophy of Science, University of London
1998 DEGREE Philosophy, University of Bologna
1987 DEGREE Aeronautical Engineering, Polytechnic of Milan
(2011) Humanistic Ecology: The Integration of Magic, Medicine, and Science. Common Ground. LINK
(2012) ′′Don′t Disturb my Masterpiece! ′′ Towards an Ecology of Learning. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. LINK
(2011) A History of Galileo′s Inclined Plane Experiment and Its Philosophical Implications. Foreword by David Wootton. The Edwin Mellen Press. LINK
(Download here the supporting multimedia materials file).
A review of the book by the late Curtis Wilson.
(2008) Reenacting Galileo′s Experiments: Rediscovering the Techniques of Seventeenth-Century Science. Foreword by William R. Shea. The Edwin Mellen Press. LINK
My Mellen books are supported by multimedia materials and videos of experiments which are freely available at www.exphps.org.
(2012) Signals, cochlear mechanics and pragmatism: a new vista on human hearing? Journal of Experimental & Theoretical Artificial Intelligence 24, 527-545. LINK
(2011) A morphological theory of human hearing. In: WHAT FIRE IS IN MINE EARS: Progress in Auditory Biomechanics. Proceedings of the 11th International Mechanics of Hearing Workshop. Editor(s): Christopher A. Shera, Elizabeth S. Olson. Melville, NY: The American Institute of Physics, 363-368. LINK
(2011) Il mondo di carta di Giovanni Vailati. Annuario del centro studi Giovanni Vailati. 2008/2009, 19-25. LINK
(2009) Experimental history: swinging pendulums and melting shellac. Endeavour 33, 88-92. LINK
(2009) Response to Maarten Van Dyck′s commentary. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 40, 319-321. LINK
(2009) Superposition: on Cavalieri′s practice of mathematics. Archive for History of Exact Sciences 63, 471-495. LINK
(2009) Radical mathematical Thomism: beings of reason and divine decrees in Torricelli′s philosophy of mathematics. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 40, 131-142. LINK
(2008) Galileus deceptus, non minime decepit: A re-appraisal of a counter-argument in Dialogo to the extrusion effect of a rotating earth. Journal for the History of Astronomy 39, 425-452. LINK
(2008) Breaking the circle: the emergence of Archimedean mechanics in the late Renaissance. Archive for History of Exact Sciences 62, 301-346. LINK
(2008) The empirical basis of equilibrium: Mach, Vailati, and the lever. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 39, 42-53. LINK
(2007) Science and authority in Giacomo Zabarella. History of Science 45, 404-42. LINK
(2006) A new look at Galileo′s search for mathematical proofs. Archive for History of Exact Sciences 60, 285-317. LINK
(2005) Galileo′s construction of idealized fall in the void. History of Science 43, 343-389. LINK
(2005) ′Spuntar lo scoglio piu′ duro′: did Galileo ever think the most beautiful thought experiment in the history of science? Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 36, 223-240. LINK
(2005) The cognitive development of Galileo′s theory of buoyancy. Archive for History of Exact Sciences 50, 189-222. LINK
(2003) Mental models in Galileo′s early mathematization of nature. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 34, 229-264. LINK
(2001) The obscurity of the equimultiples. Clavius′ and Galileo′s foundational studies of Euclid′s theory of proportions. Archive for History of Exact Sciences 55, 555-597. LINK
(2001 Galileo and the discovery of the phases of Venus. Journal for the History of Astronomy 32, 109-129. LINK
(2001) Galileo did not steal the discovery of Venus′ phases: a counter-argument to Westfall. In: Largo campo di filosofare. Eurosymposium Galileo 2001. Editor(s): Montesinos, J., & Solis, C. La Orotava, Fundacion Canaria Orotava de Historia de la Ciencia, 2001, 433-444.
(1998) Re-examining Galileo′s theory of tides. Archive for History of Exact Sciences 53, 223-375. LINK
Work in Progress
Experimental History and Philosophy of Science
A research program with the objective of exploring a new approach to the history and philosophy of science. Experimental history and philosophy of science (ExpHPS) consists in re-creating as faithfully as possible the experimental apparatus of landmark experiments in the history of science, and in re-performing the experiments. ExpHPS asks questions about knowledge shaped by experiment. ExpHPS, we hope, will cast new light on the history and philosophy of science and on the processes of science itself. Please visit www.exphps.org for the latest on the project. In collaboration with my colleague Edouard Machery we have started a new book series for University of Pittsburgh Press devoted to this innovative approach to scholarship. Invitation for book proposals.
Human Hearing and the History and Philosophy of Musical Science
This research/teaching project aims at developing an integrated approach to hearing and knowledge in humans. It combines the methods of the history and philosophy of science with psychoacoustic experimentation and computer modeling of the physiology of human hearing. The project explores historical and philosophical questions concerning music and knowledge in the history of Western civilization such as: The emergence of music theory in antiquity; the role of music in the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century; the relation between music as a science and musical aesthetics; music and mathematics; music and cognition in humans and animals; the foundations of modern psychoacoustics; the nature of harmony. The project will bring together the humanities and the natural sciences in the spirit of Hermann von Helmholtz′s ground-breaking work on music and the physiology of sound perception.
Philosophy of Learning
The project explores a philosophy of learning inspired by humanistic ideals. It reflects on the transformative possibilities opened up by active engagement with experiential domains. It draws attention to epoch-making transformations in the history of Western civilization that have exposed the dynamic relation between conscience, emotions, and learning. An ecological model of learning is proposed that emphasizes emotional, ethical, and cognitive learning as holistic processes. The model focuses on the pragmatics of learning, the creativity of improvisation, rhetorically mediated experience, emotional settings, and the education of the senses. The project is based on a inclusive worldview. Its fundamental tenet is that rational inquiry, emotions, and morality form a continuum in human nature.
2012 SCIENTIAE Disciplines of knowing in the early modern world. Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, April, 2012
2012 Nineteenth Century Studies Association, 33rd Annual Conference Asheville, North Carolina, March, 2012
2011 Epistemology of modeling and simulation. Pittsburgh, April, 2011
2011 The 11th International Mechanics of Hearing Workshop, July, 2011, Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts
2011 Ninth International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities. Universidad de Granada, Granada, Spain , June, 2011 (a presentation of the book Humanistic Ecology)
HPS 0430 Galileo and the Creation of Modern Science
The Italian physicist and astronomer Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) was the decisive figure in the rise of modern science. First, he ushered in a new era in astronomy when he aimed a 30-powered telescope at the sky in 1610. Second, he revolutionized the concept of science when he argued that the book of nature is written in the language of mathematics. Finally, he astounded the theologians, who eventually condemned him to life imprisonment, when he claimed that the scientist′s search for the truth must not be constrained by religious authority. This course studies Galileo in the broader intellectual, social, and religious context of early modern Europe.
HPS 0700 History and Philosophy of Musical Science
Do you really love music? Musical science teaches you why! In this course, you will learn about musical science in antiquity, music in the scientific revolution, musical science and aesthetics, animal music, psychoacoustics, and the nature of harmony. Musical science has shaped the history of human civilization. It has informed not only hearing but thinking. This course focuses on reading historical and philosophical texts, listening to sound and music, and a hands-on approach to learning.
HPS 0515 Magic, Medicine and Science
In Western civilization, magic, medicine, and science have always been deeply related to one another. This course introduces students from all backgrounds to humanistic ecology, an interdisciplinary method of learning which combines the history of magic, medicine, and science with the humanities. Humanistic ecology teaches how to integrate scientific research, philosophy, pedagogy, literature, and health in a holistic framework. Students will learn about classical forms of self-transformation, healing, and knowing, which have been the foundations of Western civilization for more than two millennia, and which will help them find original pathways to knowledge and wellbeing.
HPS 1508 Classics in History of Science: Galileo′s Two New Sciences
Four hundred years ago Galileo Galilei aimed a telescope at the sky. He revolutionized astronomy. Equally revolutionary were his theories and experiments in physics, published in his masterpiece Two New Sciences. In this course we will learn why Galileo′s theories and experiments in physics were revolutionary. We read Galileo′s Two New Sciences, setting it in the context of the history and philosophy of Western science and civilization.
HPS 2522 Galileo and All That
In this seminar, we will explore Galileo′s contributions to the cultural revolution of the seventeenth century, including the astronomical discoveries, the physics of falling bodies, the philosophy of nature, the harmony of religion and science. We will place Galileo in the broader humanistic, philosophical, mathematical and religious context of early modern Europe. We will re-enact his ingenious experiments in the HPS laboratory and reconstruct his creative pathways towards knowledge. We will trace his lasting legacy in the controversies that shaped the history and philosophy of modern science. The seminar will be based on an integrated methodology which emphasizes the study of primary sources, dialogue, experimentation, and a hands-on approach to learning.
HPS 2522 History and Philosophy of Musical Science
This seminar explores historical and philosophical questions concerning music as a form of knowledge in the history of Western civilization (with some ethno-musicological excursuses relatively beyond). These questions include (but are not limited to): The emergence of music theory in antiquity; the role of music in the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century; the relation between music as a science and musical aesthetics; music and mathematics; music and cognition in humans and animals; the foundations of modern psychoacoustics; the nature of harmony. The seminar is based on an integrated historical-philosophical and experimental methodology which emphasizes the study of primary sources, Socratic dialogue, personal reflection and meditation, design and implementation of experiments with sound and music, and more generally a hands-on approach to learning.
HPS 2524 Experimental History of and Philosophy Science
In this seminar, we will explore an experimental approach to the history and philosophy of science. We will engage both in theoretical discussion and in experiment design, implementation, and interpretation. We will learn about landmark experiments in the history of science, and have hands-on activities in the HPS laboratory. The seminar offers a challenging educational setting, emphasizing active participation rather than passive transmission of doctrines.
HPS 2522 History and Philosophy of Early Calculus
This seminar explores historical and philosophical questions concerning early calculus. These questions include: Indivisibles quantities vs. infinitesimal quantities, the problem of tangents, fluxions vs. differentials, analysis/ synthesis, limits/ integration, discovery/ emergence/ justification in mathematics.
HPS 2518 The Unity of Science
This seminar focuses on the changing conceptions of the structure and unity/disunity of science as a whole in the modern era. The goal is to see how these conceptions relate to questions regarding the proper domain of the sciences, the notion of method, skepticism and foundationalism.
HPS 2511 Genesis and Geology
This seminar explores the development of changing views on the nature of fossils and their contribution to the understanding of the history of the earth from the Renaissance to the early nineteenth century. Religious controversies on the age of the earth and natural-philosophical inquiry into the meaning of fossils contributed to the emergence of fundamental scientific notions, such as evolution, catastrophism, uniformitarianism, and geological time, to mention but a few. Drawing on primary and secondary sources this seminar sheds light on the history of geological and palaeontological knowledge, and the emergence of evolutionary thinking.