Course Description:

Taught in Italian, this course aims to familiarize students with major political events and cultural trends of modern Italy (Risorgimento, Unification, Realism, Emigration, Futurism, Fascism, Reconstruction, Neo-realism) as well as their representations in literature and art, beginning from the unification. We will study historical texts and analyze literary, musical, and visual works of art (Verga, Serao, Romantic opera, Macchiaioli, Futurism, Neorealist cinema), pursuing three main objectives: to deepen the cultural competence of students of Italian; to acquire a vocabulary adequate to the close analysis of works of art and other cultural artifacts; and finally, to further develop advanced language skills, both receptive (reading, listening) and productive (speaking and writing).

Learning Goals:

At the end of the course, students will be able to identify and describe crucial developments of the Italian society and culture during the period of time studied, to understand the main aspects of political and artistic movements, and to analyze individual cultural products in relation to their specific historical, social, and linguistic context. Taught in Italian, this course will also advance the students’ linguistic skills and develop their ability to understand, interpret, and communicate complex ideas in standard oral and written Italian.

Departmental Goals II and III: Cultural Proficiency and Professional Preparation.

Required Texts and Materials:

  • Reader available in the Italian Department, 84 College Ave.

  • Readings available on Sakai

  • Web Sites indicated in the syllabus

  • Films indicated in the syllabus

Course Requirements:

The presentation consists of an oral discussion of 15 minutes on a research topic arranged with the instructor. The oral presentation is aimed to develop students’ research skills as well as their ability to express themselves orally in discussing Italian culture. Texts, graphics and other visuals materials may be used to accompany presentations. Reading directly from notes is not permitted.

The paper must consist of 3 pages written in Italian on a topic chosen in consultation with the instructor (it is recommended to expand the topic discussed in your presentation).

The tests are administered in class in the course of the semester.

Attendance, Homework, and Participation are mandatory. More than 2 unjustified absences and late arrivals will negatively affect your attendance and participation grade. Every fourth late arrival constitutes one absence. Participation in class is fundamental and an integral component of the final grade. The course is designed to be intensively interactive, thus all students are expected to contribute to class discussions on texts, articles, essays, and films.

Language policy:

This is an advanced class of Italian. No English is allowed. Repeated use of English in class will decrease your grade by a full letter.

Breakdown of grade:

Attendance and Participation: 15%

Presentation: 15%

Homework assignments: 20%

Tests: 30%

Final Paper: 20%