Federico Luisetti

Federico Luisetti

Federico Luisetti

Prof. Ph.D.

Assoziierter Professor für Kultur und Gesellschaft Italiens

Unterer Graben 21

9000 St. Gallen


Environmental Humanities

Kritische Theorie


Politische Philosophie


Dekoloniale Theorie

Politische Ökologie



2001: Ph.D. in Comparative Literature, Department of Comparative Literature, Graduate Center, City University of New York

1999: Dottorato di ricerca in Hermeneutics, Department of Philosophy,  Università degli Studi di Torino

1994: Laurea (Bachelor) in Aesthetics, Department of Philosophy, Università degli Studi di Torino 



Seit 2018: Assoziierter Professor für Kultur und Gesellschaft Italiens,  School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Universität St. Gallen   

2005 - 2017: Professor of Italian Studies, Comparative Literature, and Communication Studies, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 

2013 -  2017: Chair of the Department of Romance Studies, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

2006:  Adjunct Professor of Aesthetics, Program in Communication Studies, Università degli Studi di Torino

2002 - 2006: Research Fellow, Program in Communication Studies, Università degli Studi di Torino


2017– 2018: Visiting Fellow, Humanities Institute, University College Dublin 

2017: Visiting Fellow, Moore Institute for Research in Humanities and Social Studies, National University of Ireland Galway 

2009: Visiting Professor of Italian Studies, School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University

2007: Society for the Promotion of Science Fellow, School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University  


Kurse an der HSG seit 2018:


  • Corruption and Criminality, the Italian Way
  • Rethinking Politics: From Machiavelli to Contemporary Debates
  • Postcolonialism. Politics, Methods, and Texts
  • Primo Levi
  • Toxic Country. Italy and Environmental Emergencies
  • Turmoil. Italian Literature, Culture, and Politics in the 1960s and 1970s


  • Machiavelli: Populism, Power, and the People
  • Rethinking Societies and Cultures in the Age of Climate Change
  • The Anthropocene. Critical Perspectives on a New Epoch of Humanity
  • The Italian Difference. Biopolitics and Italian Theory 
  • The Global Environment. Critical Perspectives on Socio-Ecological Futures


  • Workshop Responsibility




Research Projects

Unruly Natures (2020-present)

Unruly Natures is an ongoing multi-year collaborative international research project and network in the Environmental Humanities.  The aim is to study socio-natural subjectivities, promote transdisciplinary conversations, and organize innovative ecopolitical initiatives. Co-organized with Flurina Gradin (HSG and Zurich University of the Arts, ZHdK).

See our website at: Unruly Natures


Guest Lectures 

The faculty of Italian Culture and Society organizes regularly guest lectures with international experts from a wide range of disciplinary backgrounds. Our aim is to place the University of St. Gallen at the center of Swiss and international debates in Italian Studies and the Environmental Humanities, and allow master and bachelor students to engage with the most distinguished, influential, and innovative researchers.

For the full list of events, see:


Academic Conferences

Resentment and Utopia (October 19-20, 2023)

Interdisciplinary international conference at the University of St. Gallen on political futures. Co-organized with Thomas Telios (HSG) and Jörg Metelmann (HSG).

Politics of Nature (October 11-13, 2018) 

Interdisciplinary conference at the University of St. Gallen on politics and ecology. Co-organized with Emanuel Alloa (University of Fribourg).


Summer Schools

Hybrid Ecologies (September 22 - 25, 2022)
International working conference for invited researchers about hybrid ecologies, biodiversity politics, and liminal spaces in the urban environment, Zurich area.

Earth Beings in the Upper Valais (September 16 - 19, 2021)
International working conference for invited researchers about  the subjectivity of nature in the Upper Valais area, Oberwald.

Becoming a River. Liquid Disasters and Stories (August 25 - September 1, 2019)

Summer School at the Swiss Institute in Rome. Co-organized with Federica Martini (École de design et Haute école d'art du Valais, EDHEA) and Cecilia Canziani (American University of Rome).


Outreach Conferences on Italian Language, Culture, and Society

L'italofonia e il ruolo del servizio pubblico dei media, CORSI - SSR, Società Dante Alighieri, the Italian Consulate, Forum St. Katharinen, St. Gallen, May 7, 2022

Anch’io parlo italiano, CORSI, Società Dante Alighieri, the Italian Consulate, and the Forum per l’italiano in Svizzera, HSG and Coira, March 23r 24, 2018

See also: 



Ausgewählte Vorträge seit 2015

“Non-human Subjects,” The Mountain of Advanced Dreams, School of Interspecies Diplomacy, Schloss Thun, Thun, September 28

“An African Anthropocene?” The Commons We Want: Between Historical Legacies and Future Collective Actions, XIX Biennial IASC Conference, Nairobi, June 21

“Governance Principles  - Cultivating common sense in the Pluriverse”, Agile Governance Summit, World Economic Forum, Tokyo, April 27, 2023. More information here

"On the Crisis of Presence", Aesthetics and Critique, Kunsthalle Friart - Université de Fribourg, November 11, 2022

“Earth beings”, EASLCE Conference, Universidad de Granada, September 13, 2022

“L'insegnamento della lingua e cultura italiana in Svizzera”, L'italofonia e il ruolo del servizio pubblico dei media, CORSI - SSR, Forum St. Katharinen, St. Gallen, May 7, 2022

"Earth beings / Contronature",  Master in the Environmental Humanities, Roma Tre University, April 22, 2022

"Earth Beings at the Commodity Frontiers", Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research (AIHR), University of Amsterdam, February 25, 2022

“Stato di natura. Ecologie-mondo tra Giacomo Leopardi e Giuseppe Penone”, Cattedre svizzere di italianistica,, October 6, 2021

“Earth Beings: an Ecopolitical paradigm?" Retooling Knowledge, Franklin University, September 10, 2021

“Earth Beings and the Neoliberal State of Nature”, École des hautes études en sciences sociales (EHESS)/, Revue des Livres, des idées et des écologies, Paris, February 10, 2021

“Contemporary Debates on the Ecological Crisis”, Potential World 2, Migros Museum, Zurich, January 18, 2021, Migros Museum, Zurich

“What is a neoliberal state of nature?” SHSS-Kolloquium, University of St. Gallen, November 25, 2020

"Decolonizing nature", Epidemos Guest Seminar Series, The University of Edinburgh, November 11, 2020

“Earth Beings”, Swiss Geoscience Meeting 2020, ETH Zurich, November 7, 2020

“Pandemic Injustice”, Imagining the Post-Coronavirus World, AURO University, Surat, May 4, 2020

“Speculative Earth. On Geopower and Counternatures”, Geo-power. What New Earth? Centre for Culture and Ecology and the Department of Geography, Durham University, January 10, 2020

“Energy Objects: Unsustainable Art and the Zero Waste Economy”, Aix-Marseille Université/LESA, November 28, 2019

“On Ecocolonialism and Speculative Crime Scenes”, ICI Berlin, November 18, 2019

“What Can Anthropocenologists Learn from Earthworks?” Art in the Anthropocene, Trinity College Dublin, June 7, 2019

"Pier Paolo Pasolini: Realism without History", Department of Romance and Latin American Studies, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, May 5, 2019   

“Wasting the Crisis. Anthropocenic Extinctions and Neoliberal Circular Natures”, Beyond Recycling. Crossed Perspectives on the Management of Waste, Remains and Surplus, University of Geneva, February 4, 2019

“The Climate of Disaster. From the Environment to Counter-nature”, Anthroposcreams, HEAD – Genève, November 8, 2018

“Ecogovernmentality,” Master on Territory and the Environment, Università Roma Tre, Rome, October 5, 2018 

“Contronatura. Arte povera e geopotere”, Contre-cultures italiennes, Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense, Paris, May 31, 2018 

"Earth Politics and the States of Nature of Late Capitalism”, UCD Humanities Institute, University College Dublin, February 7, 2018 

“Pasolini and Geopower”, Pétrole, 25 ans après. (Bio)politique, éros et vérité dans le dernier roman de Pier Paolo Pasolini, Université Paris-Sorbonne, October 6, 2017

“Biopower/Geopower", National University of Ireland Galway, June 12, 2017 

“After the Leviathan. From Biopolitics to Political Animism”, The Politics of Life: Rethinking Resistance in the Biopolitical Economy, Balsillie School of International Affairs, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, March 2, 2017

“Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Political Animism”, Post-Humanism in the Anthropocene, Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures Mellon Seminar, University of Virginia, December 2, 2016 

“Antropoceno, animismo politico”, Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogotà, September 7, 2016 

"Reflections on Gaia and the Anthropocene,” Left Forum, John Jay College, New York, May 20, 2016 

“Gaia: Goddess of the Anthropocene?” Anthropocene and the Humanities, Institute for the Arts and Humanities, UNC-Chapel Hill, April 29, 2016 

"Managing the Humanities”, Italian Studies Summit, Clemson University, March 25, 2016

“Anomie/Animism: On the Decolonial State of Nature,” Du colonial au mondial: littératures et études littéraires nationales à l’épreuve, Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense, September 25, 2015

“Decoloniality, Modernity, and the Anthropological Perspective,” Netherlands Institute of Cultural Analysis,  Amsterdam, June 15, 2015 

“The Anomie of the Earth”, Left Forum, John Jay College, New York, May 30, 2015 

 “Decoloniality, Modernity, and the Anthropological Perspective,” Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis, Amsterdam, June 15, 2015

“Futurist Photodynamism,” King’s College, University of London, London, April 23, 2015