Humanism in Renaissance Florence: Books, Wisdom, and Knowledge with Chandi Wyant

Humanism in Renaissance Florence: Books, Wisdom, and Knowledge with Chandi Wyant


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This seminar will examine the rise of humanism in early Renaissance Florence and how the quest to recover lost texts from the ancient world resulted in new ideas about education, human potential, and the importance of classical culture.

Florentine humanists took inspiration from the ancient world to inform their contemporary worldview. We'll learn how the revival of the past was central to the Renaissance humanist mission. An essential component of their intellectual movement was an obsessive search for texts and manuscripts from the classical world. Their spectacular finds shaped the intellectual and academic culture of Florence.

We will also examine developments in the world of books during the fall of the Roman Empire and the Middle Ages, including book technology and scripts. We will meet the famous book hunters of the early Renaissance and examine the ideas they found in the texts they unearthed.

Led by an expert on the intellectual history of fifteenth-century Florence, Chandi Wyant, this interactive seminar will shed light on how and why Renaissance Florence prioritized education, literacy, books, knowledge, and human potential. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an increased understanding of the modern western world's links to the Renaissance and our debt to the Florentine humanists.

Chandi Wyant, originally from California, is an accredited guide to Italy's museums and currently lives in Florence. She has taught history for colleges in the US and the Middle East and is the author of a memoir about her solo long-distance walk on Italy’s pilgrimage route. Chandi holds masters' degrees in both international education and renaissance history and has a particular interest in the intersection between humanist and artistic innovations in 15th century Florence.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

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