Lombroso, Cesare (1835–1909)

Cesare Lombroso's parents, Aronne Lombroso and Zefora Levi, both came from wealthy, educated Jewish families established respectively in Veneto and Piedmont. With the sensitivity and lively intellect that were to be hallmarks of his character throughout his life, a young Lombroso experienced the Enlightenment, freemasonry, and patriotism that pervaded the tumultuous years of the Italian Risorgimento and found particularly fertile terrain in his mother's family.

Early on, Lombroso read the works of Paolo Marzolo (1811–1868), whose linguistic analysis led him to the field of historicist and positivist thinking, which Giambattista Vico's (1668–1744) ponderings had initiated in Italy. From that moment, guided by the writings of Claude-Henri de Saint-Simon (1760–1825) and Auguste Comte (1798–1857), Lombroso delved deeper into sociological and positivist thinking, refuting the romantic spiritualism that ...

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