Federica Buongiorno is assistant professor in Theoretical Philosophy and Phenomenology of Technology at the University of Florence, Italy. She received her PhD in Philosophy from the Sapienza University of Rome in 2013; her dissertation on Husserl’s early philosophy was published in 2014 (Logica delle forme sensibili. Sul precategoriale nel primo Husserl). She has been a Stipendiary Fellow (2021-2021) and a Visiting Fellow (2021-2022) at the ICI Berlin and previously held a post-doc fellowship in philosophy of technology at the TU Dresden (2017-2020). She has also been a post-doc fellow at the IISS of Naples (2012-2013), at the Freie Universität Berlin (2014-2017) and at the IISF of Naples (2017).

She is Editor in Chief of the philosophical journal Azimuth and a member of the Editorial Board of Lo Sguardo; she also manages the philosophical book series Umweg (Inschibboleth edizioni). Her research interests include phenomenology, philosophy of technology, and epistemology, with a special focus on the issues related to the ‘digital turn’. Her publications include three monographs devoted to phenomenological philosophy and several articles on the digital self, the extended self, and the ‘quantified self’/lifelogging movement.

Beyond the ‘New Digital Cartesianism’: Deconstructing Dualism in Digital Embodiment
Visiting Project 2021-23

My current research project focuses on the critical-phenomenological study of embodiment in the processes and practices of digital subjectification and AI programs based on artificial neural networks. My fundamental theoretical point consists in the systematic critique of the dualistic reductions implicit in both AI projects and the accompanying philosophical narratives, which often tend to restore a form of “new digital Cartesianism.” In opposition to such narratives, I propose a different conception of embodiment (“double embodiment”) aimed at preventing the theoretical (and ideological) need to reintroduce forms of dualism into AI epistemology.

My current project benefits from the combination with two other strands of research at the intersection of phenomenology and technology. As a result of the symposium “Performing Embodiment: Practices of Reduction,” organized in February 2022 at the ICI Berlin with Alberica Bazzoni, a volume is being prepared that will collect the talks given on that occasion and supplement them with a series of further articles with the intention of mapping the issue of embodiment in artistic, literary and augmented reality practices from a phenomenological point of view. A second strand consists of the creation of a “Network for Critical Studies in Media Ecology” that will provide an infrastructure for the critical study of the interrelationships between technology and the environment: the network will involve various institutions and research centers on the European territory.

From Linearity to Modularity: A Phenomenological Study on Analog Patterns Within Contemporary Electronic Music Production and Fruition
ICI Project 2020-22

Music has always been an essential cultural element in the history of mankind. Current developments and changes deriving from the ‘digital turn’ have left decisive marks on musical evolution as well as cultural experience at large. By referring to the phenomenological method and approach, this project critically addresses the issue of electronic music production and fruition by questioning the differences and analogies between digital and analog music composition.

Focusing on the reductive and minimalist approach typical of the modular synthesis as opposed to the linear (binary) digital synthesis, the project argues that the current revival of analog synthetic music production (be it combined or not with digital devices and techniques) conveys a distinct musical temporality and structure, which imply a different – that is, a non-binary, deconstructive, analytical, and environmental – creative process, thereby challenging the normative and constructive understanding of the artist as well as the traditional relationship to the audience. As a case study, Buongiorno will refer to the Italian musician and performer Caterina Barbieri, well known for her minimalist, modular-oriented approach to electronic music.