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Introducing Italy: Local and Global Perspectives

Module Code: IT116
Module Name: Introducing Italy: Local and Global Perspectives
Module Coordinator: Dr Cecilia Piantanida
Two Term Module
Module Credits: 30

Module Description

How do we define Italy? What do we mean by Italian culture and identity? One of the defining features of Italy has been how it has engaged with other countries, powers and cultures throughout its history, even before it officially became a nation state in 1861. This module examines how Italian identities have been formed through interaction with other cultures and how Italian thought and culture has shaped the world around us from medieval times to the present day. The module traces the development of a standard Italian language and its relationship with dialects and local identities. It examines the processes leading to the establishment of an Italian nation state. We will consider internal diversity within Italy (regional and linguistic diversity, ethnic diversity, gender and sexuality), before moving on to look at Italy's cultural influence globally, from anglophone receptions of Dante's Divine Comedy and the influence of Renaissance thought in Europe, to stardom in Italian film. The last section of the module questions the impact of mobility on questions of belonging, examining Italian emigration, the colonial period, and contemporary immigration. The module aims to situate the study of Italy within a global perspective, whilst maintaining a focus on local specificities.


1000 word short essay/commentary (on Term 1 content)
1500 word essay (on Term 2 content)
10 minute individual presentation (Term 3)
2 hour exam (Term 3)