Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Research Fellow, Parapsychology Foundation

I was recently exploring old issues of the Italian journal Luce e Ombra (LO). Initially edited by Angelo Marzorati, this publication started in 1901 and had a spiritualistic orientation. There are many issues of LO in the International Association for the Preservation of Spiritualist and Occult Periodicals (Search here.)

Luce e Ombra 1902

Luce e Ombra 1907

Luce e Ombra 1922

LO is very important to understand 20th century Italian interest in spiritualism and psychical research. The collection has the following years: 1902-1903, 1907-1913, and 1915-1929. My colleague in Italy, Dr. Massimo Biondi, a fountain of knowledge regarding the Italian history of Spiritism and psychical research, recently told me in an email that there are more issues of this journal available online at the digital library of the Biblioteca Nazionali Centrale di Roma, including those published in later years with a different title, La Ricerca Psichica (1932-1939).

Massimo Biondi

Massimo Biondi

Ricerca Psichica

LO has fascinating articles. A frequent contributor was Ernesto Bozzano, who I have mentioned before in this blog (click here and here). Bozzano published many multi-part articles in LO (as well as books) discussing various psychic phenomena and presenting a great number of cases from the spiritualist and psychical research literatures. Some examples are the following:

Ernesto Bozzano 2

Ernesto Bozzano

(1911). Considerazioni ed ipotesi su fenomeni di bilocazioni [Reflections and hypotheses about the phenomena of bilocation]. 11, 57-70, 173-186, 234-246, 273-294.

(1912-1913).  Dei fenomeni premonitori [Premonitory phenomena]. 12, 454-468, 528-541; 13, 17-29, 82-94, 120-131, 173-190, 263-276, 303-310, 341-353, 391-405, 442-457, 486-501, 554-564.

(1916-1918). Dei fenomeni d’infestazione [The phenomena of infestation (hauntings)]. 16, 417-430, 484-504; 17, 25-58, 92-105, 161-180, 232-244, 290-307, 345-360; 18, 13-30, 86-101, 169-180, 199-210, 265-272, 309-319.

Bozzano Infestazione Luce e Ombra 1916

(1919-1920). Delle apparizioni di defunti al letto di morte [Deathbed apparitions of the dead]. 19, 169-179, 250-257, 192-305; 20, 15-30.

(1921-1922). Dei fenomeni di “telekinesia” in rapporto con eventi di morte [The phenomena of “telekinesis” in relation with death events]. 21, 225-233, 270-276, 304-315, 375-380; 22, 13-25.

Bozzano Telekinesia Morte Luce e Ombra

(1923-1925). Delle communicazioni medianiche tra vivente [On mediumistic communication between the living]. 23, 193-205, 272-286, 362-372; 24, 5-20, 87-97, 139-148, 230-237, 265-272, 333-340; 25, 21-29, 57-63, 104-119.

Readers interested in the medium Eusapia Palladino will find particularly interesting the May-June 1918 issue, which has several articles about the medium, who died that year. The issue also has an editorial note presenting an index of articles about the medium published in LO: “L’Attivita Medianica di E. Palladino Registrata in “Luce e Ombra” (1901-1917)” [The Mediumistic Activity of E. Palladino Recorded in “Luce e Ombra” (1901-1917). 18, 166-168]. This includes over 90 entries consisting of séance reports and aspects about the medium’s life, as well as mentions of Palladino in general articles, critiques of publications, and news about seances in various places.

Luce e Ombra 1918 Palladino Issue

Eusapia Palladino whole body Courtier

Eusapia Palladino

Several authors who are virtually forgotten today wrote repreatedly for LO. Some examples were Antonio Bruers, Enrico Carreras, Vincenzo Cavalli, Angelo Marzorati, and Francesco Zingaropoli. Although Emilio Servadio is remembered today in parapsychology mainly for his writings about ESP and psychoanalysis, he wrote several articles in LO that are rarely cited today. Some of them are:

Emilio Servadio 4

Emilio Servadio

(1930). Surrealismo e medianità [Surrealism and mediumship]. 30, 169-174.

(1930). Che cos’e la metapsichica moderna [What is modern metapsychics]. 30, 274-279, 327-332, 375-381.

(1932) Otto sedute col medium Erto [Eight seances with the medium Erto]. La Ricerca Psichica (Luce e Ombra), 32, 344-355, 381-393, 434-448, 481-495, 535-546.
(1933). L’ultima Hélène Smith [The last of Hélène Smith]. La Ricerca Psichica (Luce e Ombra), 33, 674-685.

The following are a few of the many articles discussing various phenomena and conceptual issues by other authors in LO:

Bianchi, R. (1925). Il calcolo elementare applicato ai sogni premonitorio [Elementary calculus applied to premonitory dreams].25, 386-394, 457-467.

Bruers, A. (1926). Fenomeni telepatico nella vita dell’exploratore Stanley [Telepathic phenomena in the life of the explorer Stanley]. 26, 145-150.

Carreras, E. (1902). Materializzazione in pieno giorno [Materialization in full daylight]. 2, 440-446.

Imoda, E. (1912). La media Linda Gazzera [The medium Linda Gazzera]. 12, 1-5.

Linda Gazzera 7

Linda Gazzera

Lombroso, C. (1909). Case fantomatiche (hantees) [Phantom houses (hauntings)]. 9, 3-21.

Luisiada, E. (1928). Sogni premonitore e teorie metapsichiche [Premonitory dreams and metapsychic theory]. 28, 219-227.

Mackenzie, W. (1923). A proposito di “polipsichismo” [Regarding “polypsychism”]. 23, 129-142.

Porro, F. (1903). Animismo e Spiritismo [Animism and Spiritism]. 3, 44-49.

Francesco Porro

Francesco Porro

Raveggi, P. (1915). Il fenomeni metapsichici e la psicologia introspectiva [Metapsychic phenomena and introspective psychology]. 15, 433-439.

Richet, C. (1927). L’avenire della metapsichica [The future of metapsychics]. 27, 423-424.

Senigaglia, G. (1910). Una seduta a  Roma con Eusapia Paladino [A séance in Rome with Eusapia Paladino]. 10, 32-35.

Venzano, G. (1907-1908). Contributo allo studio delle materializzazioni [Contribution to the study of materializations]. 7, 405-409, 441-453, 521-531, 576-586, 622-631; 8, 27-40, 57-68.

Vesme, C. (1929). Studio sulle possessioni demoniache descrita negli Evangeli [Study of demoniacal possession described in the Gospels]. 29, 507-513, 550-557.

Cesar de Vesme

Cesare Baudi di Vesme

X. (1911). Un caso di rincarnazioni? [A case of reincarnation?] 11, 40-42.

Zingaropoli, F. (1908). Manifestazioni spontanee misterose: Marche e impronte di fuoco [Mysterious spontaneous manifestations: Fire marks and imprints]. 8, 329-345, 539-545.

Luce e Ombra 1910 issues

LO is still around. For a list of articles published in 2019 click here. There is also a list of the articles published between 1947 and 2003.

Luce e Ombra 1948