Courses

Spring 2017 Italian Undergraduate Courses

Subject to change. Please refer to InsideND for the most up-to-date, accurate information.

ROIT 10101 / 10102 / 10110 – First-Level Italian 
ROIT 10101 and 10102, Beginning Italian I & II, are the standard first-year language sequence, 4 credits per semester, meeting three hours per week plus one day online.   ROIT 10110, Intensive Beginning Italian, is a computer enhanced 6 credit course, combining traditional classroom time and online instruction, to attain the result of ROIT 10101 and 10102 in one semester. It involves independent work by students, a portion of which will be performed online on the textbook Sentieri Vista Higher Learning Supersite. Part of the work will be done in class with your instructor (MWF) and part will be done online on Tuesdays and Thursdays by reading, listening, completing exercises, posting writing assignments and recording your speech on the Supersite. There are two instructors assigned to this course. One will be present in class on MWF, and the other will be following your progress online during the T-Th sessions.  With the sequence ROIT 10110 - 20215, you can reach upper level culture and literature courses in one year.
 
ROIT 20201 / 20202 / 20215 – Second-Level Italian 
ROIT 20201 and 20202, Intermediate Italian I and II, are the standard second-year language sequence, 3 credits per semester, meeting three hours per week, and incorporating more advanced language skills with cultural topics.  ROIT 20215, Intensive Intermediate Italian, is a 6 credit course, meeting 5 days per week, and attaining the result of ROIT 20201 and 20202 in one semester.  With the sequence ROIT 10110 - 20215, you can reach upper level culture and literature courses in one year.
 
ROIT 20300 – Let’s Talk Italian I
W 3:30-4:30pm
Patrick Vivirito

This is a one-credit conversation course meant to accompany your regular classroom study of Italian language, literature, and culture.  It will not review grammar, but allow you the opportunity to practice your Italian with other language students while considering specific aspects of Italian culture.  There will be no written work.  The instructor may send articles or assign brief research assignment or vocabulary preparation prior to class to facilitate discussion.

ROIT 20610-01- Literature, Science, Humanity, and Friendship: Reading Primo Levi
MW 2:00-3:15pm
V. Montemaggi 

In this course we will explore the profound connections between literature, science, and what it means to be human. We will carry out such exploration by reading together the work of Jewish Italian writer and chemist Primo Levi, doing so in the light of one of the central ethical principles governing Levi’s work: friendship. Jewish Italian writer and chemist Primo Levi is considered one of the most important authors of the 20th Century. Levi’s The Periodic Table (1975) has been referred to as “the best science book ever”, and his If This Is A Man (1947/1958) is widely regarded as one of the most thought-provoking accounts of humanity ever to have been written. We will read both of these, together with a number of other works by Levi, including poems, essays, short stories, and a novel. By doing so we will give ourselves the opportunity of diving deeply and fruitfully into reflection on some vital questions: what is a human being? What is the relationship between friendship and truth? What is the relationship between suffering and knowledge? How are the humanities and the sciences connected to each other? Taught in English. Throughout the course, we will make use of materials from the Primo Levi Collection of the Hesburgh Library - one of the most important collections in the world dedicated to the study of Primo Levi. Crosslisted LLRO 20610, PRL 33115

CSEM 23101-01/02- On Humor: Understanding Italy
TR 12:30-1:45 pm / TR 3:30-4:45pm
J. Welle

This College Seminar explores questions of humor, laughter, and comedy through a rich variety of classical and modern texts. We begin with examples of Greek and Roman comedy, and proceed to examine Commedia dell’arte, an improvisational form of theatre originating in Italy that was influential throughout Europe for over two centuries. We encounter Shakespeare and Goldoni and analyze their relationship to both classical comedy and to Commedia dell’arte. Having traced the contours of ancient comedy and the roots of modern comedy, we turn to a major twentieth-century thinker on humor: Luigi Pirandello. Pirandello’s tragic-comic vision is explored through short stories and a masterpiece of modern theatre, “Six Characters in Search of an Author.” Next, we analyze a series of Italian film comedies discussing them in the historical context of Italy over the second half of the twentieth century. Throughout this trajectory, our primary focus will be on the nature of humor and comic forms as expressed in classical comedy from Ancient Greece and Rome up to contemporary film comedies; our secondary focus will be on why comedy from the ancient classical inheritance through theCommedia dell’arte to contemporary film comedy provides a key to understanding Italy both as an heir to an ancient civilization and as a lively modern country. Students will be evaluated on their preparation for and participation in class discussions, on leading class discussions, on oral presentations, and on a final exam. To further develop skills of speaking and oral presentation, the course will also incorporate aspects of “Readers’ Theatre” as students will learn to read sections from the various plays out loud in class with dramatic effect. 

ROIT 30300-01- Let's Talk Italian II (1 credit)
R 3:30-4:30pm
C. Moevs

This mini-course in Italian meets one hour per week for group discussions on varied contemporary issues in Italian culture, society, and politics. Conducted in Italian. Recommended for students in their third or fourth year of Italian who have completed four or five semesters of Italian, or who have completed ROIT 20300.

ROIT 30310-01- Passage to Italy
MW 2:00-3:15pm
S. Ferri

An introduction to Italian culture through the analysis and discussion of major forms of literary works in different genres from the Middle Ages to the present, as well as music, film, art, theatre, and opera.  This is not an exhaustive survey, but a sampling of key works and themes of cultural significance, focusing on interpretation and intercultural communication. The course also constitutes a review of Italian language and grammar. Building on the strong foundation in grammar from your previous courses, you will have the opportunity to fine-tune your command of spoken and written Italian. In short, the course should give you the tools to make your own passage into the rich, enchanting, beautiful world of Italy.

ROIT 30721-01- Introduction to Modern Italian Literature and Culture
MW 11:00-12:15pm
S. Ferri

Renowned for its rich past but full of contradictions up to the modern day, Italy has one of the most fascinating histories in the world. This course sheds light on the history of modern Italy and provides a unique perspective onto Italian modernity by exploring the country’s cultural production. We will focus on key issues that unveil the unique “spirit” of modern Italy, such as the importance of the past, the tension between political realism and idealism, the recurrence of social and political crises, immigration, revolution, and youth culture. Through the study of historical and literary texts, films, and other media, the course seeks to understand the development of modern Italy and its future trajectory.

ROIT 40116-01- Dante II
TR 11:00am-12:15pm
C. Moev

Dante's Comedy is one of the supreme poetic achievements in Western literature. It is a probing synthesis of the entire Western cultural and philosophical tradition that produced it, a radical experiment in poetics and poetic technique, and a profound exploration of Christian spirituality.  Dante I and Dante II are an in-depth study, over two semesters, of the entire Comedy, in its historical, philosophical and literary context.   Dante I focuses on the Inferno and the works that precede the Comedy (Vita Nova, Convivio, De vulgari eloquentia); Dante II focuses on the Purgatorio and Paradiso, along with the Monarchia.  Students may take just one of Dante I and II or both, in either order.   Lectures and discussion in English; the text will be read in a facing-page translation, so we can refer to the Italian (but knowledge of Italian is not necessary).  Counts as an Italian Studies course.  Students with Italian have the option of also enrolling in a one-credit pass/fail Languages Across the Curriculum section, which will meet one hour per week to read and discuss selected passages or cantos in Italian.   NOTE:  the one-semester lecture course ROIT 40114, Dante’s Divine Comedy: The Christian Universe as Poetry, is often offered in place of Dante I. LIT - Univ. Req. Literature. Cross-listed with LLRO 40116, MI 40553,MI 60553

Taught in English

ROIT 40548-01- Italian Cinema: The Realities of History (in English)
TR 12:30-1:45pm
Z. Baranski

Italian film-making continues to be most highly regarded for the films made by directors, such as Vittorio De Sica, Roberto Rossellini, and Luchino Visconti, who belonged to the Neo-realist movement (1945-53) and who tried to make films that examined the contemporary experiences of ordinary Italians. The films were inspired by the belief that, by presenting a truthful reflection of life in Italy which gave spectators information about the experiences of their fellow citizens, they would lead to greater understanding, and hence to a better society. Such was the impact of Neo-realist cinema on Italian culture in general and on Italian film-making in particular that its influence may be discerned in most films that have been made from the mid 1950s to this day. This state of affairs has led to the assumption that Neo-realism marks a decisive break with Italy’s pre-war past. Yet, even though Neo-realism did constitute, in ideological terms, a clear departure from fascism, its stylistic roots, its sense of the need for commitment, and its faith in the efficacy of a realist aesthetic all establish ties both with Liberal and Fascist Italy. The principal aim of the course is to explore the construction and development of the Italian cinematic realist tradition from the silent era to the early 1970s, although its primary focus is on the period 1934-1966. In particular, the course examines the formal and ideological continuities and differences between Neo-realist films and their silent and fascist predecessors. In a similar way, it analyses Neo-realism’s impact on later film-makers, such as Federico Fellini, Pietro Germi, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Gillo Pontecorvo, Dino Risi, and Francesco Rosi, who attempted to develop new versions of cinematic realism.  Taught in English; counts as an Italian Studies course  Cross lists: LLRO 40548, FTT 40249.

Taught in English

ROIT 40550-01- Italian Theatre: From the Commedia dell'Arte to Goldoni
TR 2:00-3:15pm
F. Cotticelli

The commedia dell'arte established modern professional theatre, and had a massive impact throughout Europe beginning in the 16th century.  This course will trace the evolution and impact of the commedia dell'arte (improvisation, actors working as playwrights, professional troupes, etc...), how it produced some classics of the European repertoire (the plot of Mozart's Don Giovanni for example), and how it evolved into the great written theatre of early modern Italy, especially Goldoni.  The course will be conducted in English. Crosslists LLRO 40550 FTT 40550 MI 40557 Attribute MESE (European Studies)

ROIT 53000-01- Italian Seminar- Siena: The Life, Culture, and Devotion of One of Italy’s Greatest Treasures
MW 3:30-4:45pm
V. Montemaggi

Taught in Italian, this course offers the opportunity for an in-depth study of Italian life, history, art, and religion, through detailed study of one of Italy’s best known and most loved cities: Siena. One of Italy’s great medieval cities, Siena stands to this day as one of the most interesting, intriguing and fascinating examples of defining dynamics of Italian culture: the inspiring relationship between art and public life; the nourishing importance of food and wine; the fruitful tension between tradition and innovation; the constructive encounter of sacred and secular. Siena is home to some of Italy's most wondrous art (Duccio, Martini, Lorenzetti, Beccafumi) and some of its most breathtaking architecture (its Duomo, its Palazzo pubblico). It also produces some of Italy’s most distinctive food and wine products (carne chianinia e di cinta senese, panforte, Chianti). In the late Middle Ages it was the home of Saint Catherine and Saint Bernardino, as well as one of the most powerful political and economic centres in the Italian peninsula. It is home still today to one of Italy’s most lively, intense, dynamic, and controversial traditions: the Palio. All of this life, culture, and devotion is brought together in Siena in and through the contrade, a form of communal living originating in the Middle Ages and evolving ever since. It is also all brought together in and through a particularly profound devotion to Mary, to whom the city has been dedicated since 1260. In all of these respects - and more - to study Siena is to give yourself the opportunity of enriching in uniquely profound ways your understanding of Italy. Through its research component, the course will allow you to do so by developing in academically rigorous ways your own specific and particular interest in Italian life and culture. Crosslisted MI 53556, PRL 33116 Attribute MESE (European Studies) 

Fall 2016 - Italian Undergraduate Courses

Subject to change. Please refer to insideND for the most up-to-date, accurate information.

ROIT 10101 / 10102 / 10110 – First-Level Italian 
ROIT 10101 and 10102, Beginning Italian I & II, are the standard first-year language sequence, 4 credits per semester, meeting three hours per week plus one day online.   ROIT 10110, Intensive Beginning Italian, is a computer enhanced 6 credit course, combining traditional classroom time and online instruction, to attain the result of ROIT 10101 and 10102 in one semester. It involves independent work by students, a portion of which will be performed online on the textbook Sentieri Vista Higher Learning Supersite. Part of the work will be done in class with your instructor (MWF) and part will be done online on Tuesdays and Thursdays by reading, listening, completing exercises, posting writing assignments and recording your speech on the Supersite. There are two instructors assigned to this course. One will be present in class on MWF, and the other will be following your progress online during the T-Th sessions.  With the sequence ROIT 10110 - 20215, you can reach upper level culture and literature courses in one year.
 
ROIT 20201 / 20202 / 20215 – Second-Level Italian 
ROIT 20201 and 20202, Intermediate Italian I and II, are the standard second-year language sequence, 3 credits per semester, meeting three hours per week, and incorporating more advanced language skills with cultural topics.  ROIT 20215, Intensive Intermediate Italian, is a 6 credit course, meeting 5 days per week, and attaining the result of ROIT 20201 and 20202 in one semester.  With the sequence ROIT 10110 - 20215, you can reach upper level culture and literature courses in one year.
 

ROIT 20300 – Let’s Talk Italian I
W 3:30-4:30pm
Patrick Vivirito

This is a one-credit conversation course meant to accompany your regular classroom study of Italian language, literature, and culture.  It will not review grammar, but allow you the opportunity to practice your Italian with other language students while considering specific aspects of Italian culture.  There will be no written work.  The instructor may send articles or assign brief research assignment or vocabulary preparation prior to class to facilitate discussion.

CSEM 23101 - On Humor:  Understanding Italy
MW 2-3:15
J. Welle

This College Seminar explores questions of humor, laughter, and comedy through a rich variety of classical and modern texts. We begin with examples of Greek and Roman comedy, and proceed to examine Commedia dell’arte, an improvisational form of theatre originating in Italy that was influential throughout Europe for over two centuries. We encounter Shakespeare and Goldoni and analyze their relationship to both classical comedy and to Commedia dell’arte. Having traced the contours of ancient comedy and the roots of modern comedy, we turn to a major twentieth-century thinker on humor: Luigi Pirandello. Pirandello’s tragic-comic vision is explored through short stories and a masterpiece of modern theatre, “Six Characters in Search of an Author.” Next, we analyze a series of Italian film comedies discussing them in the historical context of Italy over the second half of the twentieth century.

Throughout this trajectory, our primary focus will be on the nature of humor and comic forms as expressed in classical comedy from Ancient Greece and Rome up to contemporary film comedies; our secondary focus will be on why comedy from the ancient classical inheritance through the Commedia dell’arte to contemporary film comedy provides a key to understanding Italy both as an heir to an ancient civilization and as a lively modern country.

Students will be evaluated on their preparation for and participation in class discussions, on leading class discussions, on oral presentations, and on a final exam. To further develop skills of speaking and oral presentation, the course will also incorporate aspects of “Readers’ Theatre” as students will learn to read sections from the various plays out loud in class with dramatic effect.

ROIT 30207 – Survey of Italian Renaissance Art
TR 2:00-3:15pm
R. Glass

This course provides an introduction to the art and architecture produced in Italy from around 1300 to the mid-sixteenth century. Studying some of Western art history's best known artists, such Donatello, Botticelli, Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael, and Titian, we will explore the ways in which art was commissioned, made, and functioned in Renaissance Italy, and various approaches art historians have taken in interpreting its meaning. Topics will include artistic media and techniques; stylistic and iconographic analysis; humanism and renewed interest in the legacy of classical antiquity; sacred images and spaces; patronage, identity, and the social functions of art; and the changing status of artists and the arts themselves.  Taught in English; counts as an Italian Studies course for the Majors and Minor. CROSSLIST ARHI 30310

ROIT 30310 – Passage to Italy
TR 11:00am-12:15pm & MW 3:30-4:45pm
A.Leone, C. Moevs

In this fifth-semester course you will survey the rich panorama of Italian culture from the origins to the present, and learn to analyze and understand works drawn from the major literary and artistic genres (lyric poetry, prose, theatre, epic, novel, film, opera, contemporary song, as well as art and architecture). At the same time you will review and consolidate your grasp of the Italian language at an advanced level.   In short, the course should give you the tools to make your own passage into the rich, enchanting, beautiful world of Italy.  Taught in Italian; counts as a Lit-Culture course for the major.  Pre-requisite: ROIT 27500 or 20215 or equivalent.  Strongly recommended for majors and supplementary majors.   LANG - College Language Req, LIT - Univ. Req. Literature, MESE - European Studies Course.

ROIT 30711 – Medieval /Renaissance Literature and Culture
TR 2:00-3:15pm
C. Moevs

This course helps you to understand and interpret the most important works of medieval and Renaissance Italian literature, painting, sculpture, architecture, and music, in their historical, social, and cultural context.  We will analyze key texts from Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio, Machiavelli, and Ariosto, among others, and learn to appreciate key works of art and architecture by Duccio, Giotto, Ghiberti, Donatello, Brunelleschi, Alberti, Masaccio, Botticelli, Da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Raphael, among others.  We will seek to make the historical and social context come alive, especially in Florence, Rome, Milan, Urbino, and Venice, and focus on some of the most extraordinary personalities of an age of great personalities (e.g., Isabella d'Este, Federico da Montefeltro, Michelangelo, Pietro Aretino). The ultimate aim is to reflect in an informed and sensitive way on the great political, social, intellectual, cultural, and spiritual changes that occur between 1200 and 1550 in Italy, the epicenter of one of the most extraordinary periods of human accomplishment in world history, and on how those changes reflect a profound and shifting understanding of self, of the world, and of God. The course also aims to help you speak, understand, and write Italian with more confidence, accuracy, and ease (we will spend a little time in each class reviewing and practicing more sophisticated structures in the language).  Requirements include brief discussion forum entries, four brief analytical papers (2-3 pages each), a midterm, and a final.  Taught in Italian; counts as a Lit-Culture course; required for majors and supplementary majors in the Lit Culture concentration; this course or ROIT 30721 required for majors in the Italian Studies concentration.  Cross-listed with MI 30577.

ROIT 40114 – Dante’s Divine Comedy: The Christian Universe as Poetry
TR 12:30-1:45pm
Z. Baranski

Dante is the greatest religious poet of Western culture, and his great epic poem, the Divine Comedy, offers a remarkable and original synthesis of his view of the fundamental relationship between God and humanity. The course offers an introduction to Dante’s Commedia (the title of the poem is Comedy and not Divine Comedy as is commonly believed) by focusing on the first of its three parts, Inferno, while also paying significant attention to its other two parts, Purgatorio and Paradiso. Classes principally concentrate on providing readings of individual cantos. (The course is divided into 4 introductory lectures, 12 classes on Inferno, 7 on Purgatory, and 6 on Paradiso.) At the same time, broader issues central to Dante’s masterpiece will be discussed. In particular, attention will be paid to Dante’s ties to classical and Christian culture, his political views, his ideas on language, his involvement in contemporary intellectual debates, his efforts to use poetry for ethical and religious ends, and his literary experimentation (including his perplexing choice of title for his masterpiece).   The course is taught in English. Dante’s poem, too, will be read in English translation, though students with a reading knowledge of Italian are encouraged to read it in both languages. The translation is that found in the annotated bilingual edition by Robert and Jean Hollander (the three-volume—Inferno, Purgatorio, Paradiso—paperback edition is published by Anchor Books, an imprint of Random House).  Counts as an Italian Studies course for the Major or Minor.  Cross list with MI 40565/MI 60552, LLRO 40114.

ROIT 40733 – Italo Calvino: Dal neorealismo al postmodernismo
TR 11:00am-12:15pm
M. McLaughlin

Italo Calvino (1923-85) was Italy’s finest twentieth-century novelist. His works have been translated into over 45 languages in 60 different countries, and some of these (such as Il barone rampante and Le città invisbili) have become cult or classic works in the English-speaking world. This course highlights the constant variety and innovation in Calvino’s output, starting with his early neorealist work, Il sentiero dei nidi di ragno (1947), before exploring his fantasy trilogy I nostri antenati (1960), and then moving on to his most famous postmodern works, Le città invisbili (1972) and Se una notte d’inverno un viaggiatore (1979). The course will be taught in Italian.  Counts as a Lit-Culture course for the Major or Minor. NOTE:  ALMOST ANY COURSE IN THE UNIVERSITY OR FROM ABROAD WHOSE CONTENT IS AT LEAST HALF ON AN ITALIAN SUBJECT (INCLUDING CLASSICS, ART HISTORY, HISTORY, MUSIC, POLITICS, ETC....) MAY COUNT AS AN ITALIAN STUDIES COURSE (A COURSE IN ENGLISH ON AN ITALIAN SUBJECT) TOWARD A MAJOR OR MINOR.  IT NEED NOT HAVE AN ROIT CROSSLIST.  BUT IF IT DOES NOT HAVE AN ROIT CROSSLIST YOU MUST HAVE IT APPROVED BY YOUR ADVISER TO COUNT FOR A MAJOR OR MINOR.


Graduate

 

ROIT 63010 – Introduction to Advanced Studies in Italian
TBD
C. Moevs, J. Welle, Z. Baranski

A two-semester course, meeting one hour a week, co-taught by all the Italian T&R faculty. The course will ensure a solid foundation in the precise analysis of literary texts and other cultural artifacts in the context of Italian Studies, including a survey of metrics, rhetorical figures, narrative techniques, and film analysis. It will also provide an introduction to key terms and forms of critical and literary theory, and develop the skills necessary to pursue advanced independent research projects, including familiarity with bibliographic resources and research methods. During the course of the year students will also review a university-level manual/anthology of Italian literature. Required in their first year of all Master’s and Doctoral candidates specializing in Italian. Passing the final exam of this course is a prerequisite for continuing studies in Italian.

ROIT 63253 – Leon Battista Alberti and the Italian Renaissance
TR 3:30-4:45pm
M. McLaughlin

Leon Battista Alberti (1404-72) is one of the most well-known figures of the Italian Renaissance. His extraordinary range of abilities as a writer, architect, art theorist and even athlete earned him the title of the first Renaissance or Universal man, according to Jacob Burckhardt in his influential work, The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy (1860). Naturally Burckhardt’s categories have been seriously contested over the last 150 years and interest in Alberti has risen enormously recently (the secondary bibliography has increased exponentially in the last 50 years). This course will deal with major problematic concepts such as Renaissance and Humanism as well as exploring the controversial figure of Alberti. The key works to be studied are his autobiography (Vita), his dialogue on the family (I libri della famiglia) and his treatises on painting (Della pittura) and architecture (De re aedificatoria). The course will be taught in English.  

ROIT 63510 – Film and Literature in Italy
W 3:30-6:15 
J. Welle

This course examines one of the key dynamics of the twentieth century in Italy: the interactions between film and literature. Three interrelated phenomena will be analyzed: 1) the interactions with, and contributions to, cinema and film culture by literary writers, 2) films based on literary texts, and 3) the influence of film on literature. From pre-cinematic media such as the magic lantern and the illustrated book in the nineteenth century to the emergence of digital forms of cinema and new media technologies in the 1990s, Italian writers react to the moving image and take part in shaping both its development and its cultural reception. Along the way, Italian writers produce a rich body of “cinema literature": interviews and articles, criticism, theoretical interventions, and manifestos, as well as poems, short stories, novels, and plays that demonstrate the impact of cinema on literature. In sum, the relationship between film and literature in Italy sheds light on literary history, on the history of cinema, on the history of intellectuals and media, and on cultural history more broadly. In addition to weekly films, and the preparation of readings, assignments will include 1) class presentations of articles, films and readings, 2) leading class discussions, 3) a research presentation, 4) a research paper. CL LIT 73981 

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