Faces of Italy:1861 to Present
This course examines the most pressing issue that has confronted Italian society since its Unification: How does one make a nation? If the Italian historical process that led to unification (the Risorgimento) can be read as an unfulfilled revolution (Gramsci), a revolution that failed (Gobetti), or even the fulfillment of noble plans made by enlightened men, animated by a philanthropic spirit (Croce), how can these different ways of reading the nation’s beginnings help us to understand its past, its present, and its future? The course is interdisciplinary: we will place political and historical transformations (from Liberalism, to Fascism, to the Resistance, to the First and Second Republics) in a dialectical relation to the cultural production of an Italy constantly in flux, looking at literature, music and the visual arts as expressions of social change: as reactions for or against the dominant culture. We will also contextualize the Italian reality within that of Europe and the rest of the world.
Required Texts: L’Italia spiegata ai ragazzi, A. Nicaso, Pignotti. Mondadori, 2011.
Il Gattopardo, Tomasi di Lampedusa - Feltrinelli – EAN.
Fontamara di Ignazio Silone - Classici Moderni, Oscar Mondadori.