Luciana Percovich

Luciana Percovich (born 25 July 1947) is an Italian non-fiction writer, a teacher, a translator and director of a series of books on women’s history and spirituality.[1] She was born in Gorizia, Italy in a Mitteleuropean Italian speaking family forced to leave Fiume, Rijeka at the end of World War II, with cultural and geographical roots in Austria and Dalmatia, she spent her childhood and adolescence in Gorizia attending Classical studies. At the age of 18, she went to Milan to complete her education, and there she graduated in 1972 (Lingue e Letterature Straniere Moderne - Università degli Studi di Milano). She has been defined as "a traveller between worlds and a weaver of space-time connections for her ability of embracing distant wide horizons with a loving insight".[2]

Whatever I've done, it's been conceived within women's relations, in presence of women's bodies and in the flowing of awakened women's emotions.

— Luciana Percovich
Luciana Percovich

Women's MovementEdit

Since then, she lived and worked in Milano as a teacher, a translator, an author and an activist in many pioneering projects of the Women's Movement (women's health centers, bookshops, cultural and political training, publishing houses, etc.). During the university years, marked by the students' movement of 1968, she met the first women's consciousness rising groups which were bringing their critic to the core of the social economic and political structure. Patriarchal Attitudes (1970) by Eva Figes, one of the first feminist texts to be read in Italy, was for her a turning point. She joined Lotta Femminista, a group investigating the invisible economic role of female unpaid work, and soon after a collective on female body and health. They produced and published on their own Anticoncezionali dalla parte della donna (Birth control from the Women's side, 1974, translated in Portuguese in 1978), opened one of the first women's health clinics in a popular district of Milano, introduced the self-help practice brought to Italy from Los Angeles and by the Boston Women's Health Collective. Within a couple of years, a multifaceted Health Women Movement spread all over Italy, which discussed and promoted information in national conferences in Milan, Rome, Florence. A law opening public health services for women was issued in 1975.[3]

A small pamphlet, Witches, Midwives and Nurses by B. Ehrenreich and D. English brought from the US - which reconstructed from a totally new perspective who were the Witches and why they were burned for more than three centuries, was translated by Luciana and became a most popular text. Its publication (Le Streghe siamo noi. Il ruolo della medicina nella repression della donna, 1977)[4] opened her first editorial experience as chief editor of a series of books called "Il Vaso Di Pandora" for La Salamandra Edizioni, a university publisher in Milano which was, together with La Tartaruga Edizioni-Milano and Edizioni delle Donne-Roma, one of the three independent feminist publishers of the Seventies and on.[5] This series of books lasted until 1986, and introduced to Italian readers works such as A Literature of One's own by E. Showalter and A feeling for the Organism, by Evelyn Fox Keller on Nobel Prize Barbara McClintock.[6]

From 1975 to 1986 she was part of the Libreria delle Donne di Milano,[7] which issued a series of periodical publications as vehicles of their political and cultural collective research (Sottosopra and the Catalogues of the Bookshop), and of the women's centres in Milano (Collettivo di Via Cerubini, Collettivo di Via Col di Lana, Cicip & Ciciap, Libera Università delle Donne[8]). She travelled frequently to Roma, Firenze and Pescara and wrote articles for the women's reviews of that time, as Sottosopra, Orsaminore, Reti, Lapis, Fluttuaria, Madreperla.[9]

The fields of Science and EnvironmentEdit

In 1985 she had a son, Pietro, with her life-long companion Giancarlo De Marinis. The Chernobyl disaster (26 April 1986) acted as a stimulus to a deeper research in the fields of Science and Environment, themes become central in her research since the groups on women's health and medicine[10] She taught at the Free Women's University affording a variety of topics, ranging from female aggressivity (1995), to women and Islam (1996) and the Cyber revolution (1997). She cooperated with different Centri Documentazione Donne in various parts of Italy. In the same years, she was a member of the Commissione Consultiva sui Temi della Donna della Provincia di Milano (Milan Provincial Commission on Women's issues).[11] In 1990 she was awarded for the translation of Memoirs of a Spacewoman by Naomi Mitchison (Premio Città di Monselice for Literary and Scientific Translation - chairmen Franco Fortini and Mario Luzi, Diario di una Astronauta, La Tartaruga, 1988), and produced some titles by female authors in Science Fiction.[12][circular reference]

The Sacred FeminineEdit

A new horizon opened during her travel to Australia where she met in Alice Springs the indigenous vision of life/nature/religion. Through the Aranda culture, as narrated by T.G.H. Strehlow (whose Central Australian Religion. Personal Monototemism in a Polytotemic Community she translated in 1997), she entered the path of the Sacred Feminine, that is of a radically different vision of the terrain occupied by monotheistic male religions in Europe and elsewhere. For some years, she investigated shamanic and kundalini practices, while reading a series of books produced by the pioneer women anthropologists and theologians of the Seventies and eventually the work of Marija Gimbutas. Reconstructing her-story (or history before the advent of patriarchy), reclaiming a cosmo-biological vision of the "divine in nature" (or "inclusive transcendence" in the words of the radical feminist theologian Mary Daly), investigating on myths and on the symbolic language of societies with "women at the centre" have become the focus of her research from then on.[13]

Mary Daly was invited to Italy by the Università delle donne di Milano[8] in 2002 and by Armonie – Bologna in 2004. During that conference, "Dopo la Dea", she met an independent publisher, Chiara Orlandini - Venexia Editrice, and together they convened translating Quintessence[14] by Daly and beginning a new collection of books on Women's history and spirituality, which was called "Le Civette Saggi" (2005).[15] The same year, for the Fondazione Badaracco/Archivi[16] Riuniti delle Donne di Milano she published La Coscienza nel Corpo.[17] Donne salute e medicina negli anni Settanta, a well-documented history of the health movement in Italy during the Seventies.[18] Retired from teaching at the Liceo Classico Manzoni di Milano, she moved to the country, to join the small familiar organic farm in Abruzzo.

In the following years she has introduced, and made their books available to Italian readers, the works of many women authors (Mary Daly, Marija Gimbutas, Vicki Noble, Tsultrim Allione, Starhawk, Genevieve Vaughan, Phyllis Currott, Kathy Jones, Heide Goettner-Abendroth among others). With Laima Association, the International Indigenous Cultures of Peace conferences have been organized in Torino (2012, 2013, 2015) and in Rome (in honor of Marija Gimbutas, 20 years after her death, 2014). In 2015 she has presented a panel on Earth based Spirituality of the Native cultures of the Past and Present at The Parliament of World Religions, in Salt Lake City, Utah, Usa; in 2016 she was invited at the Goddess Conference in Glastonbury, GB.[19] She works on the archetypes of the Goddess and in Crone Circles, a project to reclaim the Wise Women of the matriarchal traditions.[20]


  • Posizioni amorali e relazioni etiche, Melusine, Milano 1993.
  • La coscienza nel corpo. Donne, salute e medicina negli anni Settanta, Franco Angeli, Milano 2005.[17]
  • Oscure Madri Splendenti. Le origini del sacro e delle religioni, Venexia, Roma 2007.[21]
  • Colei che dà la vita. Colei che dà la forma. Miti di creazione femminili, Venexia, Roma 2009.[20]
  • She who gives life, She who gives form, Venexia, Roma 2021.[22]
  • Verso il Luogo delle Origini, Un percorso di ricerca del sé femminile, Scritti 1982-2014, Castelvecchi, Roma 2016.[23]


  • 'Donne del Nord/Donne del Sud. Verso una politica della relazione tra diversità, solidarietà e conflitto, Franco Angeli, Milano 1994.[24]
  • 'Theodor G. H. Strehlow, I sentieri dei sogni. La religione degli aborigeni dell'Australia Centrale, Mimesis, Milano 1997.[25]
  • Dopo Pechino: Pensare globalmente, Agire localmente (Proceedings of the Conference), LUD, Milano 1995
  • Marija Gimbutas. Venti anni di studi della Dea, Convegno alla Casa Internazionale delle Donne di Roma, 9-10 maggio 2014, Progetto Editoriale Laima, 2015.[26]
  • Heide Goettner Abendroth, Madri di Saggezza, La filosofia e la politica degli Studi Matriarcali Moderni, Castelvecchi, Roma 2020.[27]

Editor and translatorEdit

  • Le streghe siamo noi, di Barbara Eherenreich-Deirdre English, Celuc Libri/La Salamandra, Milano 1975.[28]
  • In sintonia con l'organismo. La vita e l'opera di Barbara Mc Clintock, di Evelyn Fox Keller, La Salamandra, Milano 1987; Castelvecchi, Roma 2017.[29]
  • Diario di una Astronauta di Naomi Mitchison, La Tartaruga, Milano 1988; Mondadori Urania, Milano 1995: Castelvecchi, Roma 2013.[30]
  • La sapienza della Dea. Miti, meditazioni, simboli e siti sacri, di Dee Poth, Psiche 2, Torino 2010.[31]
  • Segni fuori dal Tempo. La vita e l'opera di Marija Gimbutas, di Donna Read e Starhawk, Psiche 2, Torino 2013.[32]
  • Nutri i tuoi Demoni. Meditazione guidata e intervista a Lama Tsultrim Allione, Psiche 2, Torino 2013.[33]
  • Società di Pace. Matriarcati del Passato, Presente e Futuro, a cura di H. Goettner-Abendroth, Un'Antologia, Castelvecchi, Roma 2018.[34]

Handouts 1993 - 2003 of the courses of the Università delle Donne-MilanoEdit

  • Passaggi, Momenti della costruzione di sé, 1993;
  • Guerre che non ho visto: sull'aggressività femminile, 1995;
  • Islam e Islamismo: ne parlano le donne, 1996;
  • La rivoluzione Cyber, Nuove reti di Donne, 1997;
  • Mitologie del divino: immagini del sacro femminile, 1999;
  • Storie di Creazione: immagini del sacro femminile, 2001.
  • Mito-archeologia d'Europa: immagini del sacro femminile, 2002
  • Il viaggio metapatriarcale di Mary Daly, 2003

A long essay (Posizioni amorali e relazioni etiche, Le Melusine, 1993) has been translated in Silvia Tubert (ed.), Figuras de la madre, Ediciones Catedra, Madrid 1996. English essays have been published in Trivia. Voices of Feminism 9, 2009;[35] Nemeton. High Green Tech Magazine 1, 2010; She is everywhere volume 3, 2012;[36] She Rises volume 1, 2015.[37]


  1. ^ Enciclopedia delle donne. "Luciana Percovich in enciclopedia delle donne" (in Italian).
  2. ^ Livia Geloso. "Luciana Percovich" (in Italian). Enciclopedia delle donne (Encyclopedia of Women).
  3. ^ Percovich, Luciana (2005). La coscienza nel corpo: donne, salute e medicina negli anni Settanta (in Italian). FrancoAngeli. ISBN 978-88-464-6561-0.
  4. ^ "TecaLibri: Barbara Ehrenreich: Le streghe siamo noi".
  5. ^ "Libri Il Vaso Di Pandora: catalogo Libri pubblicati nella collana Il Vaso Di Pandora | Unilibro". (in Italian).
  6. ^ Keller, Evelyn Fox (2020). In sintonia con l'organismo: La vita e l'opera di Barbara McClintock (in Italian). LIT EDIZIONI. ISBN 978-88-3290-046-0.
  7. ^ "Libreria delle donne di Milano". (in Italian). Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  8. ^ a b "Libera Universita delle Donne". Retrieved 30 April 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  10. ^ La coscienza nel corpo : donne, salute e medicina negli anni Settanta. Fondazione Badaracco. 2005. ISBN 978-88-464-6561-0.
  11. ^ Percovich, Luciana (2005). La coscienza nel corpo: donne, salute e medicina negli anni Settanta (in Italian). FrancoAngeli. ISBN 978-88-464-6561-0.
  12. ^ "Premio Monselice". Wikipedia (in Italian). 27 December 2019.
  13. ^ "Quintessenza, Intervento di Luciana Percovich a Glastonbury 2016" (in Italian).
  14. ^ Daly, Mary. (2005). Quintessenza _ : realizzare il futuro arcaico : un manifesto femminista elementare radicale. Rakusin, Sudie. Roma: Venexia. ISBN 88-87944-33-4. OCLC 799378491.
  15. ^ "Collana libri Le Civette Catalogo Libri online". Venexia Editrice (in Italian). Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  16. ^ "FONDAZIONE ELVIRA BADARACCO > ARCHIVI". Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  17. ^ a b Percovich, Luciana (2005). La coscienza nel corpo: donne, salute e medicina negli anni Settanta (in Italian). FrancoAngeli. ISBN 978-88-464-6561-0.
  18. ^ "coscienza nel corpo".
  19. ^ "About the Goddess Conference – Glastonbury Goddess Conference 2020".
  20. ^ a b Percovich, Luciana (2009). Colei che dà la vita, colei che dà la forma (in Italian). Venexia. ISBN 978-88-87944-73-0.
  21. ^ Percovich, Luciana (4 July 2013). Oscure Madri Splendenti: Le radici del sacro e delle religioni (in Italian). Venexia Editrice. ISBN 978-88-97688-28-0.
  22. ^ Percovich, Luciana (2014). She who gives life, She who gives form (E-book ed.). Venexia. ISBN 978-88-99863-65-4.
  23. ^ Percovich, Luciana (14 January 2017). Verso il luogo delle origini: Un percorso di ricerca del sé femminile 1982-2014 (in Italian). LIT EDIZIONI. ISBN 978-88-6944-876-8.
  24. ^ Percovich, Luciana; Petronio, Franca; Damiani, Cesarina (1994). Donne del nord, donne del sud: verso una politica della relazione tra diversità, solidarietà e conflitto (in Italian). F. Angeli. ISBN 978-88-204-8925-0.
  25. ^ Strehlow, Theodor George Henry (2000). I sentieri dei sogni: la religione degli aborigeni dell'Australia centrale (in Italian). Mimesis. ISBN 978-88-85889-80-4.
  26. ^ "Marija Gimbutas: Vent'anni di Studi sulla Dea. Atti del convegno" (in Italian). Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  27. ^ Goettner-Abendroth, Heide (2020). Madri di saggezza. La filosofia e la politica degli studi matriarcali moderni (in Italian). Castelvecchi. ISBN 978-88-3282-726-2.
  28. ^ "TecaLibri: Barbara Ehrenreich: Le streghe siamo noi". Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  29. ^ Keller, Evelyn Fox (14 April 2020). In sintonia con l'organismo: La vita e l'opera di Barbara McClintock (in Italian). LIT EDIZIONI. ISBN 978-88-3290-046-0.
  30. ^ Diario di una astronauta (in Italian).
  31. ^ "La Sapienza della Dea + Carte — Libro". (in Italian). Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  32. ^ "Segni Fuori dal Tempo - Libro + DVD — Libro". (in Italian). Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  33. ^ Allione, Tsultrim. (2009). Nutri i tuoi demoni : risolvere i conflitti interiori con la saggezza del Buddha. Mondadori, Cles, tipografo trentino. Milano: Mondadori. ISBN 978-88-04-58544-2. OCLC 800005356.
  34. ^ Società di pace : matriarcati del passato, del presente e futuro. Berholdt-Thomsen, Veronika., Göttner-Abendroth, Heide, 1941-, Percovich, Luciana. Roma: Castelvecchi. 2018. ISBN 978-88-3282-385-1. OCLC 1076557166.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  35. ^ "Issue 9: Thinking of Goddesses". TRIVIA: Voices of Feminism.
  36. ^ Moser, Mary Beth; Saracino, Mary (15 February 2012). She is everywhere! : an anthology of writing in womanist/feminist spirituality. ISBN 978-1462064342.
  37. ^ "She Rises Vol 1". Mago Books. 17 July 2015.

External linksEdit