A New Franz Brentano International Journal

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

I hope that this letter finds you well. Here let me send you, please, some information:

1) A new Franz Brentano Webpage is almost ready at the link

Franz Brentano 1838-1917

in order to facilitate communication. That will offer publicly accessible content and a private portal for researchers to share and comment on work in progress.

2) At the same time we have made the decision to start and launch a journal of Studies in Brentano and the Aristotelian Tradition. An International Journal.
The format is going to be online, a non-profit and electronic publishing venture, Open Access.
It does not charge readers or their institutions for access, it does not charge authors for the submission and publications of their contributions, and the reviewers co-operate on a voluntary basis. All users have the right to “read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles” but the acknowledgement and quotation of authors and papers are mandatory: Studies in Brentano and the Aristotelian Tradition. An International Journal allows third parties to download its works as long as it is credited as the source, but these articles cannot be changed in any way or used commercially (CC BY-NC-ND).
Our Ethic Statements are based on COPE’s Best Practice Guidelines for Journal Editors.
The contributions are submitted to double-blind peer review quality control.
We will publish biannually.
The journal welcomes scholarly articles in the following areas: Philosophy, Social sciences and Humanities,Theology.
Apart from articles, the journal publishes a Book Review section.
The journal accepts contributions in English, German, French, Italian, Spanish.

3) The administrative structure of the journal should be as follows:

Editor-in- chief Antonio Russo (Trieste, Italy)
Co-Editor Antonio Marturano (Roma Tor Vergata, Italy)
Editorial Board
Angela Ales Bello (Roma, Italy), Iulian Apostolescu (Bucharest, Romania), Mauro Ceruti (Milano, Italy), Joshua Furnal (Nijmegen, Netherlands), Nicoletta Ghigi (Perugia, Italy), Claire Hill (Paris, France), Carmelo Pandolfi (Roma, Italy), Lynn Pasquerella (Washington, USA), David Torrijos-Castrillejo (Madrid, Spain), Marcello Zanatta (Milano, Italy)

International Scientific Advisory Board
Evandro Agazzi (Universidad Panamericana Ciudad de México), Enrico Berti (Padova, Italy), Marco Buzzoni (Macerata), Cristina D’Ancona (Pisa, Italy), John Goldsmith (Chicago, USA), Mikhail Khorkov (Moskow, Russia), Carlo Ierna (Amsterdam, Netherlands), Dermot Moran (Boston College & University College Dublin), Gregor Nickel (Siegen, Germany), Zlatica Plašienková (Brno, Czech Republic), Ivanka Raynova (Sofia/Bulgaria and Vienna, Austria), Maria van der Schaar (Leiden, Netherlands), Wilhelm Vossenkuhl (München, Germany), Ian Woleński (Krakow, Poland), Johannes Zachhuber (Oxford, UK), Jure Zovko (Zadar, Croatia), Ghil‘ad Zuckermann (Adelaide, Australia)

Editorial assistant
Giovanna Giurlanda (Roma Tor Vergata, Itay)
Raffaella Sabra Palmisano (Lecce, Italy)

The journal is addressed to scholars, students, teachers, cultural centres, universities and libraries.

4) Main purposes:

a) the intention to clarify from a biographical standpoint the early formation of Brentano’s thinking, concerning some central elements of his reflection. These early years of education, the family environment, and the whole milieu, whence Brentano drew the vital nourishment for the rest of his lifelong journey, may be reconstructed through new documents and accounts.

b) the intention to investigate the essential theoretical and historical traits that undergird the framework of Franz Brentano’s (1838-1917) project of renewing Thomism through a new understanding of Aristotle. Franz Brentano received his first education in the firm conviction of “the conciliation of catholic dogmas with the results of unprejudiced scientific research”. This is why, in a letter to his aunt Gunda von Savigny on the 29th June 1859, he tells that he wants to draw from “Saint Thomas more than anyone else the strength” to carry on his studies and follow his path. In another of his first letters, on 23 December 1859, he declares, always to his aunt, “For Christmas, my mother promised me the works of St. Thomas Aquinas and I rejoice to have them, because he is always my patron saint and my guidance, and so he is almost my alpha and omega”.

c) To discuss and clarify the central issues regarding his determination of the most fundamental principles of Ethics. It is important to raise these questions with regard to his Moral Philosophy, because it is clear that no suffìcient attention has been given to Brentano’s theory concerning the nature of good and right. It is unfortunate that Brentano’s later views, both on ethics and in other areas of philosophy, which are so original and suggestive and so very much in the spirit of the early analytical movement in England, did not receive the degree of attention which has been accorded to his earlier views and which influenced Meinong and Husserl so strongly” (L.McAlister).

d) To discuss Brentano’s intention of the necessity of advancing the renewal of philosophy and theology beyond Saint Thomas and his School. More precisely, Brentano argued that some parts of Aquinas’ thought remained almost unelaborated. That was true especially “for the part pertaining the principles of knowledge, which had been already treated by Aristotle in Book IV of Metaphysics; even more in modern times this has become the main ground of philosophical discussions or, to use a modern expression, of the transcendental part of metaphysics.” Thomism, instead, became the shadow of a great name. All of this entailed, for Brentano, the necessity to extract some fundamental propositions and let them bear their fruits in a context very different from the Medieval one, a context rife with incredulity and scepticism, as well as a conspicuous advancement of natural sciences.

e) Brentano sees the Aquinas as someone who continued Aristotle’s tradition, just as Aristotle had done with Plato. Thanks to these convictions, throughout young Brentano’s thinking, the relationship between Aristotle and Saint Thomas assumes a privileged role, which is capable of responding authentically to the requirements of modern times, and, even more, of offering a solution to the problems that Kant and the German Idealism with its ramifications were not able to overcome. Since his early writings, then, Brentano’s primary intent was to provide a complete answer to the critics of the Stagirite; after that, he intended to point out and justify, from a strictly philosophical point of view, recourse to the Aristotelic philosophy and its most important commentator and medieval disciple. His purpose was to contribute to find, on a more stable speculative basis than what the degenerated Scholastics had done, a “catholic science.” Brentano, with unexpected energy, put forward again the critical realism of the perennial philosophy, and assumed, as a term of reference and constant comparison in his studies and publications, Aristotle and the great Scholastics.

f) Investigating to what extent Brentano has influenced Analytical Philosophy: while Brentano’s famous notion of intentionality is a widely studied subject in Analytical Philosophy, it is indeed not fully understood how deeply Brentano and his school impacted Analytical Philosophy, especially in philosophy of logic and language, linguistic and metaethics. These fields are in fact at the core of Analytical Philosophy. Finally, as Dummett suggested, would Brentano’s studies be bridging among the most important contemporary schools of philosophy?

g) Furthermore, we would like to specify this by subject matter, rather than by authors. The main intention is “to combine a longue durée approach – focusing on the long-term evolution of philosophical concepts rather than restricting itself only to a specific author– with systematic analysis in the history of philosophy. By studying Brentano and the Aristotelian authors with theoretical sensitivity, it also aims to contribute to our understanding of the Contemporary Philosophy”.

Looking forward to receiving your feedback and suggestions, let me offer my regards and all the best for the New Year
Antonio Russo