BA, magna cum laude, Università degli Studi di Firenze, Florence, Italy. MA, PhD with distinction, New York University. Areas of specialization: 20th-century Italian women’s writings; modern Italian culture, history, and literature; fascism; Western medieval poetry and thought. Recipient of the Julie and Ruediger Flik Travel Grant, Sarah Lawrence College, for summer research, 2008; the Penfield fellowship, New York University, 2004; and the Henry Mitchell MacCracken fellowship, New York University, 1998-2002. Publications: Nascita e morte della massaia di Paola Masino e la questione del corpo materno nel fascismo in Forum Italicum (Spring 2003). Translations, The Other Place by Barbara Serdakowski and Salvation by Amor Dekhis in Multicultural Literature in Contemporary Italy (editors Graziella Parati and Marie Orton, Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2007). SLC, 2001-2002, 2004, 2005–
Advanced Italian: Fascism, World War II and the Resistance in 20th-Century Italian Narrative and Cinema
This course is intended for advanced students of Italian who want to better their comprehension, as well as their oral and written skills in the language. This will be achieved by reading literary works and watching films in the original language, producing written compositions, and in-class discussion of the material. The course examines the manner in which crucial historical events that occurred during the 20th century—specifically the rise and fall of fascism, World War II, and the Resistance—were represented within Italian literature and cinema of the time, as well as throughout the decades following the end of the war up to the 1970s. Literary texts will include those authored by Ignazio Silone, Vasco Pratolini, Italo Calvino, Mario Carli, Renata Viganò, Carlo Cassola, Beppe Fenoglio, Elio Vittorini, Alberto Moravia, and Carlo Mazzantini. Films will include fascist propaganda and documentaries from the Istituto Luce’s archives, as well as films by Roberto Rossellini (his fascist-era war trilogy, as well as his neorealist films), Vittorio De Sica, Luigi Comencini, Paolo and Vittorio Taviani, Bernardo Bertolucci, Giuliano Montaldo, Ettore Scola, Luchino Visconti, Liliana Cavani, Pier Paolo Pasolini, and Federico Fellini. Conference topics may include the study of a particular author, literary text, or film that might be of interest to the student. Conversation classes will be held with the language assistants. Literary texts will be available for purchase; critical material will be available through e-reserve.
This course is for students with no previous knowledge of Italian. It aims at giving the student a complete foundation in the Italian language, with particular attention to the oral and written communication of everyday use and to all aspects of Italian culture. The course will be conducted in Italian (after the first couple of weeks) and will involve the study of all the basic structures of the language—phonological, grammatical, syntactical—with practice in conversation, reading, composition, and translation. In addition to the basic Italian textbook and an array of supplementary computer and Internet material, the course will include texts from prose fiction, poetry, journalistic prose, songs, films, recipe books, and the language of publicity. Conference work (in group) is largely based on reading and writing, and the use of the language is encouraged through games and creative composition. In addition to class and group conference, the course also has a conversation component in regular workshops with the language assistants. Supplementary activities such as opera and relevant exhibits in New York City are made available when possible. The course is for a full year, by the end of which students attain a basic competence in all aspects of the language.
This intermediate-level course aims at improving and perfecting the students’ speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills, as well as their knowledge of Italy’s contemporary culture and literature. In order to acquire the necessary knowledge of Italian grammar, idiomatic expressions, and vocabulary, students will be exposed to present-day Italy through the selection of specific newspaper articles, music, and cinema, as well as modern Italian literature (i.e., short stories, poems, and excerpts from literary works) in the original language. Literary works will include selections from Alessandro Baricco, Gianni Rodari, Carlo Castellaneta, Clara Sereni, Dino Buzzati, Stefano Benni, Antonio Tabucchi, Niccolò Ammaniti, and Italo Calvino. In order to address the students’ own writing skills, written compositions will also be assigned and will constitute an integral part of the course. The materials selected for the course, be they a literary text, a song, video, or grammar exercise, will be accessible at all times to the students through the course’s “Web Board”; research on the Web will be central to the course and will offer the basis for the weekly “Web piece,” a short paper on a particular topic. Conference topics might include the study of a particular author, literary text, film, or any other aspect of Italian society and culture that might be of interest to the student. Conversation classes will be held twice a week with the language assistants.