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Casanova & Don Giovanni

Before the lecture in Week 4, please read the following chapters from the set text (available in the library):

  • I. Family history. My first memory. Journey to Padua, p. 13-22;
  • V. My brief but highly eventual visit to Ancona. Cecilia, Marina, Bellino. The Greek Slave girl from Lazzaretto. Bellino revealed, p. 84-101 ;
  • VI. Bellino unmasked. His story, p. 102-109
  • XXVII. Voltaire, my discussions with the great man. Ariosto. The duke of Villars. The syndic and his three lovely ladies. Debate at Voltaire's house, p. 311-29

You may also want to watch Fellini's film Il Casanova (1976)

Before the lecture in Week 5, please try to listen to Mozart and Da Ponte's Don Giovanni, possibily while reading the text. In particular, pay attention to the following parts:

  • Ouverture
  • Aria: Madamina, il catalogo è questo
  • Duettino: Là ci darem la mano
  • Duetto: Oh statua gentilissima
  • Finale. Terzetto: Già la mensa è preparata/Terzetto: Don Giovanni a cenar teco/Sestetto: Ad, dov'è il perfido.

If you are interested in Don Giovanni, here are some works variously taking inspiration from Mozart's opera:

  • Byron, Don Juan (1819) (long poem)
  • Alessandro Manzoni, The Betrothed (1840) (novel)
  • Søren Kierkegaard, Diary of a Seducer (1843) (novel)
  • Charles Baudelaire, Don Juan in Hell (1857) (poem)

Primary reading

Giacomo Casanova, The Story of My Life. Selections, ed. and trans. S. Sartarelli and S. Hawkes (New York: Penguin, 2001)

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart/Lorenzo Da Ponte, Don Giovanni (1787)

Secondary reading

J. Rives Childs, Casanova: a New Perspective (London: Constable, 1988)
Lydia Flem, Casanova or: The Art of Happiness (London: Allen Lane, 1998)
Paul Hyland (ed.), The Enlightenment. A Sourcebook and Reader (London, New York: Routledge, 2003)
Roy Porter, The Enlightenment, (New York: Palgrave, 2001)
Julian Rushton, W.A. Mozart, Don Juan (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1981)
Leo Weinstein, The Metamorphoses of Don Juan (Stanford, Calif : Stanford University Press, 1959)