Italian Fascism and the Body
The idealize image of the human body-characterized by strength, virility, impenetrability, and wholeness-played a central role in Italian culture during the years of the Fascist regime (1922-45). This interdisciplinary course examines representations of the body under Italian Fascism, focusing particularly on how the regime mobilized its politics through various concepts of the body, both male and female. Students will focus on short readings of primary texts: political speeches, oral histories, legal declarations, magazine articles, photographs, advertisements, films, fiction, and poetry. Each text will be considered carefully for the ideas and values it communicates in relation to its historical context. Emphasis will be placed on the discussion of questions such as: How is meaning about the body created? What is the relation between body and identity? What types of organismal metaphors are used to describe social, political, legislative, and cultural entities? (ITAL 0355 or equivalent) 3 hrs. disc.