Contemporary Italian Cinema
In this course we will examine ten recent films (features, documentaries and shorts) and four classics which present Italy’s most pressing social issues and their impact on adolescents and young adults in an urban context. We will compare thematic and stylistic approaches of the masters with those of today’s directors and analyze how social issues have changed from the 1960s to present. The major social issues under investigation will be: the migrant experience, life on the periphery, housing crisis, crime, pollution and precarious work. Regarding this last theme one week will be dedicated to women’s experience in the workforce. Readings will range from short stories, excerpts from books on history and film, newspaper articles, interviews, reviews, and diaries of filmmakers. Class meetings are designed to improve students’ vocabulary and conversational abilities on major social issues. Students will fine tune their writing skills by preparing short papers, and the course will include a group project / presentation that will focus on the world of cinema today (production, collaborative film projects, festivals, schools, archives, museums, regional film commissions, etc.) With guidance from the instructor, students in groups will also conduct one interview with a filmmaker, producer or festival director via email or skype.
Required Texts: A course pack will be prepared by the instructor