ITST333

In Search of “Italianness” through Novellas (in English)

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A journey into the hearts and minds of Italians through the reading of seven novellas.

These works show how, when and where Italians are  at their best, worst, and most authentic.

Like a feature film, the “novella” (longer than a short story but shorter than a novel) can be enjoyed in just one sitting.  Hence, the never-ending interest for a literary genre that dates back to Boccaccio and the Italian Renaissance. Thanks to its brevity, concrete symbolism and focus on character exploration, the novella is ideal for examining the cultura­l traits underpinning the notion of Italianness.

At the end of the course, students will be better equipped to  interpret contemporary Italy and the multifarious, highly fragmented, and viscerally regional character of its citizens.

The course is taught in English by Dr. Arianna Dagnino, a creative writer and literary translator who worked for twenty years as an international reporter before re-entering academia. Feel free to email her to know more about the course.

Students from any discipline are welcome!


Language of instruction: English

Required readings
Erri de Luca, Three Horses, Other Press, New York, 2005.

Other readings will be provided by the instructor.