Italian Cultural Studies

Departmental Office: 502 Hamilton; 212-854-2308
http://italian.columbia.edu/

Director of Undergraduate Studies: Asst. Prof. Konstantina Zanou, 513 Hamilton; 212-854-0747; kz2269@columbia.edu

A major in Italian offers students the opportunity to study Italian literature and culture in an intimate, seminar setting with the close supervision of the department’s faculty. In addition, the prerequisite and corequisite sequence of language courses is designed to give students a command of written and spoken Italian.

Majors must complete 30 points and concentrators must complete 24 points. All majors and concentrators are required to take two semesters of Advanced Italian (ITAL UN3335 Advanced Italian-ITAL UN3336 Advanced Italian II: Italian Language & Culture, ITAL UN3337 Advanced Italian Through Cinema, ITAL UN3338 Italiana. Introduction to Italian Culture, the High, the Low, and the In-between, ITAL UN3645 Grand Tour in Italy, or ITAL UN3232 Senza frontiere. Lingua e cultura italiane dall’Ottocento ad oggi tra emigrazione ...) as well as one of the following two sequences:

  • Introduction to Italian Literature I and II (ITAL UN3333-ITAL UN3334) provides an overview of major authors and works in the Italian literary tradition from the Middle Ages to the present;
  • Italian Cultural Studies I and II (ITAL GU4502-ITAL GU4503) is an interdisciplinary investigation into Italian culture and society from national unification in 1860 to the present.

In consultation with the director of undergraduate studies, majors select six additional courses (concentrators select four additional courses) from the department’s 3000- or 4000-level offerings or from other humanities and social science departments with a focus on Italian culture. Students who have taken courses in Italian Literature, Italian History, and/or Italian Culture while abroad should consult with the Director of Undergraduate Studies to determine if the courses may be applicable to the major.

Highly motivated students have the opportunity to pursue a senior thesis under the guidance of a faculty adviser in an area of Italian literature or culture of their choosing. The senior thesis tutorial, ITAL UN3993 Senior Thesis/Tutorial, will count for 3 points.

Departmental courses taught entirely in English do not have linguistic prerequisites and students from other departments who have interests related to Italian culture are especially welcome to enroll.

Italian language instruction employs a communicative approach that integrates speaking, reading, writing, and listening. Courses make use of materials that help students to learn languages not just as abstract systems of grammar and vocabulary but as living cultures with specific content. Across the levels from elementary to advanced, a wide range of literary, cultural and multimedia materials, including books, film, and opera, supplement the primary course text.

The sequence in elementary and intermediate Italian enables students to fulfill the College’s foreign language requirement and thoroughly prepares them for advanced study of language and for literature courses taught in Italian. Specialized language courses allow students to develop their conversational skills.

For highly motivated students, the department offers intensive elementary and intensive intermediate Italian, both of which cover a full year of instruction in one semester. Courses in advanced Italian, although part of the requirements for a major or a concentration in Italian, are open to any qualified student whose main goal is to improve and perfect their competence in the language.

Outside the classroom, the Department of Italian organizes a weekly Caffè e conversazione where students at all levels can converse with fellow students and faculty members over Italian espresso and cookies. Students can also attend the Serata al cinema, Italian film viewings scheduled in the evening throughout the academic year, in which faculty and graduate students introduce each film and then conclude with a question and answer session. In addition, the student-run Società Italiana (culasocieta@gmail.com) organizes events such as pasta-making workshops, movie nights, and costume parties.

Advanced Placement

The department grants 3 credits for a score of 5 on the AP Italian Language exam, which satisfies the foreign language requirement. Credit is awarded upon successful completion of a 3000-level (or higher) course with a grade of B or higher. This course must be for at least 3 points of credit and be taught in Italian. Courses taught in English may not be used for language AP credit. The department grants 0 credits for a score of 4 on the AP Italian Language exam, but the foreign language requirement is satisfied.

Casa Italiana

A wide range of cultural programs are sponsored by the Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, located in Casa Italiana. These programs, which include the activities of the Columbia Seminar on Modern Italian Studies and the Italian Academy Film Festival, enrich the learning experience of the student and offer opportunities to meet distinguished Italian and Italian-American visitors to the University. The Paterno book collection is housed in Butler Library and contains valuable resources on Italian literature and culture.

For inquiries into the department and its undergraduate and graduate degrees offered, please contact 212-854-2308 or italian@columbia.edu.

Language Resource Center

The Language Resource Center (LRC) provides resources for intensive practice in pronunciation, diction, and aural comprehension of some twenty-five modern languages. LRC exercises are closely coordinated with the classroom's work.

Coordinated tape programs and on-line audio are available and mandatory for students registered in elementary and intermediate Italian language courses. Taped exercises in pronunciation and intonation, as well as tapes of selected literary works, are also available to all students in Italian courses.

Electronic Classrooms

Language instruction courses meet at least once a week in a multimedia-equipped electronic classroom in order to facilitate exposure to Italian arts such as music, opera, and film, and for other pedagogical uses.

Departmental Honors

Majors in Italian literature or Italian cultural studies who wish to be considered for departmental honors in Italian must: (1) have at least a 3.6 GPA in their courses for the major; and (2) complete a senior thesis or tutorial and receive a grade of at least A- within the context of the course ITAL UN3993 Senior Thesis/Tutorial. Normally no more than one graduating senior receives departmental honors in a given academic year.

Professors

Teodolinda Barolini, Acting Chair
Jo Ann Cavallo (Chair, on leave 2018-19)
Elizabeth Leake

Associate Professor

Nelson Moe (Barnard)

Assistant Professor

Pier Mattia Tommasino (on leave 2018-19)
Konstantina Zanou

Senior Lecturers

  • Felice Italo Beneduce
  • Federica Franze
  • Maria Luisa Gozzi
  • Patrizia Palumbo
  • Carol Rounds (Hungarian)
  • Barbara Spinelli

Lecturers

Alessandra Saggin

Guidelines for all Italian Majors and Concentrators

The courses in the Department of Italian are designed to develop the student’s proficiency in all the language skills and to present the literary and cultural traditions of Italy. The program of study is to be planned as early as possible with the director of undergraduate studies. Students are advised to meet with the director of undergraduate studies each semster in order to obtain program approval.

For students with no knowledge of Italian, the required language course sequence is:

ITAL UN1101
 - ITAL UN1102
Elementary Italian I
and Elementary Italian II
ITAL UN2101
 - ITAL UN2102
Intermediate Italian I
and Intermediate Italian II

For students planning to enroll in Intensive Italian courses, a minimum of three semesters of Italian language instruction is required, such as:

ITAL UN1121
 - ITAL UN2101
 - ITAL UN2102
Intensive Elementary Italian
and Intermediate Italian I
and Intermediate Italian II
ITAL UN1101
 - ITAL UN1102
 - ITAL UN1203
Elementary Italian I
and Elementary Italian II
and Intensive Intermediate Italian
ITAL UN1121
 - ITAL UN1203
Intensive Elementary Italian
and Intensive Intermediate Italian
And one of the following courses:
ITAL UN3335Advanced Italian
ITAL UN3336Advanced Italian II: Italian Language & Culture
ITAL UN3337Advanced Italian Through Cinema
ITAL UN3338Italiana. Introduction to Italian Culture, the High, the Low, and the In-between
ITAL UN3339Learning Italian in Class and Online: A Telecollaboration with Italy.
ITAL UN3232Senza frontiere. Lingua e cultura italiane dall’Ottocento ad oggi tra emigrazione ...
ITAL UN3645Grand Tour in Italy

Italian language proficiency equivalent to the elementary and intermediate sequence may be demonstrated by the departmental placement test, offered before the start of every semester; with a score of 4 or 5 on the Advanced Placement Examination; or with a score of 780 or higher on the SAT II Subject Test in Italian.

As noted above, courses given entirely in English do not have linguistic prerequisites; students planning a major in Italian may enroll in such courses before completing the language prerequisite for the major or concentration.


Major in Italian

Please read Guidelines for all Italian Majors and Concentrators above.

Requirements

The major in Italian literature requires a minimum of 30 points in Italian courses numbered above the intermediate level, i.e., above ITAL UN2121, to include the following:

Two semesters of Advanced Italian
ITAL UN3335
 - ITAL UN3336
Advanced Italian
and Advanced Italian II: Italian Language & Culture
Two semesters of Italian Literature
ITAL UN3333
 - ITAL UN3334
Introduction To Italian Literature, I
and Introduction To Italian Literature, II
- OR -
Two Semesters of Italian Culture
ITAL GU4502
 - ITAL GU4503
Italian Cultural Studies I: From Unification to World War I
and Italian Cultural Studies II: From World War I to the Present
Additional Courses
Select at least two other courses from the department's GU4000-level courses.
In consultation with the director of undergraduate studies, the remaining courses may be selected from the department's 3000- or 4000-level offerings or from other humanities and social science departments with a focus on Italian literature or culture.
ITAL UN3993Senior Thesis/Tutorial (or another course in Italian literature or culture)

Native speakers and students with superior proficiency (as demonstrated by a departmental exam) may replace the Advanced Italian sequence with six points of Italian literature courses of their choice.

Period Distribution

At least two courses that cover material before 1700 and two courses that cover material after 1700.



Concentration in Italian

Please read Guidelines for all Italian Majors and Concentrators above.

Requirements

The concentration in Italian literature requires a minimum of 24 points in Italian courses numbered above the intermediate level, i.e., above ITAL UN2121, to include the following:

Two semesters of Advanced Italian
ITAL UN3335
 - ITAL UN3336
Advanced Italian
and Advanced Italian II: Italian Language & Culture
or ITAL UN3337 Advanced Italian Through Cinema
or ITAL UN3338 Italiana. Introduction to Italian Culture, the High, the Low, and the In-between
Two semesters of Italian Literature
ITAL UN3333
 - ITAL UN3334
Introduction To Italian Literature, I
and Introduction To Italian Literature, II
- OR -
Two Semesters of Italian Culture
ITAL GU4502
 - ITAL GU4503
Italian Cultural Studies I: From Unification to World War I
and Italian Cultural Studies II: From World War I to the Present
Additional Courses
Select at least two other courses from the department's GU4000-level courses.
In consultation with the director of undergraduate studies, the remaining courses may be selected from the department's 3000- or 4000-level offerings or from other humanities and social science departments with a focus on Italian literature or culture.

Italian Courses

ITAL UN1101 Elementary Italian I. 4 points.

Limited enrollment.

Same course as ITAL V1101-V1102.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN1101
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 1101 001/13380 M T W Th 9:10am - 10:00am
509 Hamilton Hall
Anna Borgarello 4 16/16
ITAL 1101 002/23224 M T W Th 10:10am - 11:00am
507 Hamilton Hall
Claudia Antonini 4 10/16
ITAL 1101 003/62945 M T W Th 11:10am - 12:00pm
507 Hamilton Hall
Angelica Modabber 4 1/16
ITAL 1101 004/25745 M T W Th 12:10pm - 1:00pm
507 Hamilton Hall
Andrew Wyatt 4 18/18
ITAL 1101 005/68947 M T W Th 1:10pm - 2:00pm
509 Hamilton Hall
Catherine Bloomer 4 13/16
ITAL 1101 006/70248 M T W Th 9:10am - 10:00am
507 Hamilton Hall
Tylar Colleluori 4 8/16
ITAL 1101 007/72544 M W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
511 Hamilton Hall
Alessandra Saggin 4 15/20
ITAL 1101 008/18415 M W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
507 Hamilton Hall
Luca Naponiello 4 12/18
Spring 2019: ITAL UN1101
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 1101 001/64960 M T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
Room TBA
Alex Cuadrado 4 16/16

ITAL UN1102 Elementary Italian II. 4 points.

Limited enrollment.

Prerequisites: ITAL V1101 or the equivalent.

Introduction to Italian grammar, with emphasis on reading, writing, listening and speaking skills.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN1102
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 1102 001/73361 M T W Th 9:10am - 10:00am
511 Hamilton Hall
Margaret Scarborough 4 11/16
ITAL 1102 002/27804 M T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
511 Hamilton Hall
Alex Cuadrado 4 3/16
Spring 2019: ITAL UN1102
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 1102 001/75179 M T W Th 9:10am - 10:00am
Room TBA
Anna Borgarello 4 13/16
ITAL 1102 002/61909 M T W Th 10:10am - 11:00am
Room TBA
Claudia Antonini 4 7/16
ITAL 1102 003/71650 M T W Th 11:10am - 12:00pm
Room TBA
Angelica Modabber 4 1/16
ITAL 1102 004/15656 M T W Th 12:10pm - 1:00pm
Room TBA
Andrew Wyatt 4 16/16
ITAL 1102 005/17834 M T W Th 1:10pm - 2:00pm
Room TBA
Catherine Bloomer 4 15/16
ITAL 1102 006/75049 M T W Th 9:10am - 10:00am
Room TBA
Tylar Colleluori 4 7/16
ITAL 1102 007/17337 M W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
Room TBA
Carlo Arrigoni 4 11/16
ITAL 1102 008/24026 M W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
Room TBA
Luca Naponiello 4 16/16

ITAL UN1121 Intensive Elementary Italian. 6 points.

Limited enrollment.

No previous knowledge of Italian required. An intensive course that covers two semesters of elementary Italian in one, and prepares students to move into Intermediate Italian. Grammar, reading, writing, and conversation. May be used to fulfill the language requirement only if followed by an additional two (2) semesters of Italian language. ITAL UN2101-UN2102, or ITAL2121 and ITAL UN3333, UN3334, UN3335, or UN3336, or similar advanced course, for a total of three(3) semesters of Italian Language.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN1121
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 1121 001/14655 T Th F 12:10pm - 2:00pm
511 Hamilton Hall
Barbara Spinelli 6 8/16
Spring 2019: ITAL UN1121
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 1121 001/11146 M W Th 12:10pm - 2:00pm
Room TBA
Alessandra Saggin 6 13/16

ITAL UN2101 Intermediate Italian I. 4 points.

Limited enrollment.

Prerequisites: ITAL V1102 or W1102, or the equivalent. If you did not take Elementary Italian at Columbia in the semester preceding the current one, you must take the placement test, offered by the Italian Department at the beginning of each semester.

A review of grammar, intensive reading, composition, and practice in conversation. Exploration of literary and cultural material. Lab: hours to be arranged.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN2101
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 2101 001/64244 M W Th 8:40am - 9:55am
318 Hamilton Hall
Claudia Sbuttoni 4 7/16
ITAL 2101 002/71440 M W Th 10:10am - 11:25am
501 Hamilton Hall
Felice Beneduce 4 12/16
ITAL 2101 003/19956 T Th F 11:40am - 12:55pm
616 Hamilton Hall
Marco Sartore 4 4/16
ITAL 2101 004/75781 T Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
507 Hamilton Hall
Patrizia Palumbo 4 13/16
ITAL 2101 005/25681 M W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
509 Hamilton Hall
Lorenzo Mecozzi 4 5/16
ITAL 2101 006/20181 T Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
509 Hamilton Hall
Isabella Livorni 4 8/16
Spring 2019: ITAL UN2101
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 2101 001/63159 T Th F 10:10am - 11:25am
Room TBA
Federica Franze 4 9/16
ITAL 2101 002/17158 M W F 1:10pm - 2:25pm
Room TBA
Beatrice Mazzi 4 9/16

ITAL UN2102 Intermediate Italian II. 4 points.

Limited enrollment.

Prerequisites: ITAL V1201 or W1201, or the equivalent. If you did not take Elementary Italian at Columbia in the semester preceding the current one, you must take the placement test, offered by the Italian Department at the beginning of each semester.

A review of grammar, intensive reading, composition, and practice in conversation. Exploration of literary and cultural material. Lab: hours to be arranged. ITAL V1202 fulfils the basic foreign language requirement and prepares students for advanced study in Italian language and literature.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN2102
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 2102 002/23605 T Th F 10:10am - 11:25am
509 Hamilton Hall
Federica Franze 4 10/16
Spring 2019: ITAL UN2102
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 2102 001/17596 M W Th 8:40am - 9:55am
Room TBA
Claudia Sbuttoni 4 8/16
ITAL 2102 002/81647 M W Th 10:10am - 11:25am
Room TBA
Felice Beneduce 4 6/16
ITAL 2102 003/15496 T Th F 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
Marco Sartore 4 8/16
ITAL 2102 004/72501 T Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
Room TBA
Patrizia Palumbo 4 6/16
ITAL 2102 005/29673 M W 4:10pm - 6:00pm
Room TBA
Lorenzo Mecozzi 4 8/16
ITAL 2102 006/75947 T Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
Room TBA
Isabella Livorni 4 7/16

ITAL UN2121 Intensive Intermediate Italian. 6 points.

Limited enrollment.

Prerequisites: ITAL V1102 or the equivalent, with a grade of B+ or higher.

An intensive course that covers two semesters of intermediate Italian in one, and prepares students for advanced language and literature study. Grammar, reading, writing, and conversation. Exploration of literary and cultural materials. This course may be used to fulfill the language requirement if preceded by both V1101 and V1102. Students who wish to use this course for the language requirement, and previously took Intensive Elementary, are also required to take at least one of the following: ITAL V3333, V3334, V3335, or V3336, for a total of three (3) semesters of Italian Language.

Spring 2019: ITAL UN2121
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 2121 001/27942 T Th F 12:10pm - 2:00pm
Room TBA
Maria Luisa Gozzi 6 3/16

ITAL UN2221 Intermediate Conversation. 2 points.

Prerequisites: ITAL W1112 or sufficient fluency to satisfy the instructor.
Corequisites: Recommended: ITAL V1201-V/W1202 or ITAL W1201-W1202.

Conversation courses may not be used to satisfy the language requirement or fulfill major or concentration requirements. Intensive practice in the spoken language, assigned topics for class discussions, and oral reports.

ITAL UN1222 Intermediate Conversation II. 2 points.

Prerequisites: ITAL W1221 or sufficient fluency to satisfy the instructor.
Corequisites: Recommended: ITAL V1201-V/W1202 or ITAL W1201-W1202.

Conversation courses may not be used to satisfy the language requirement or fulfill major or concentration requirements. Intensive practice in the spoken language, assigned topics for class discussions, and oral reports.

Spring 2019: ITAL UN1222
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 1222 001/64631 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
Room TBA
Maria Luisa Gozzi 2 4/16

ITAL UN3311 Advanced Conversation. 2 points.

Prerequisites: ITAL UN2222 or sufficient fluency to satisfy the instructor.
Corequisites: Recommended: ITAL V3335x-V3336y.

Conversation courses may not be used to satisfy the language requirement or fulfill major or concentration requirements. Practice in the spoken language through assigned topics on contemporary Italian culture.

ITAL UN1312 Advanced Conversation II. 2 points.

Prerequisites: ITAL UN2102 or sufficient fluency to satisfy the instructor.
Conversation courses may not be used to satisfy the language requirement or fulfill major or concentration requirements.,This course is designed for students who have attended four semesters of Italian language, mastered the grammatical structure of the language and are ready to expand and enlarge their language skills. A particular emphasis will be put on oral production, on listening and on reading: in class and at home the students will analyze various kinds of text and genres. In-class time is dedicated to speaking and practicing Italian through a combination of group-based and individual activities, focusing on a wide range of contemporary cultural themes through the use of varied materials such as newspaper articles, advertising material and short film clips. We will focus also on grammatical structures, language functions and activities to expand the vocabulary

Spring 2019: ITAL UN1312
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 1312 001/65797 T Th 6:10pm - 7:25pm
Room TBA
Patrizia Palumbo 2 0/15

ITAL UN3333 Introduction To Italian Literature, I. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Intermediate Italian II ITAL UN2102 or the equivalent.

UN3334x-UN3333y is the basic course in Italian literature.

,

UN3333: This course, entirely taught in Italian, introduces you to Medieval and early modern Italian literature. It will give you the opportunity to test your ability as a close-reader and discover unusual and fascinating texts that tell us about the polycentric richness of the Italian peninsula. We will read poems, tales, letters, fiction and non-fiction, travel writings and political pamphlets. The great “Three Crowns” - Dante, Petrarca and Boccaccio -  as well as renowned Renaissance authors such as Ludovico Ariosto and Niccolò Machiavelli, will show us the main path to discover Italian masterpieces and understand the European Renaissance. But we will also explore China with Marco Polo and the secrets of the Medieval soul diving into the mystical poems by Jacopone da Todi. We will study parody and laughter through the “poesia giocosa” (parodic poetry) by Cecco Angiolieri and the legacy of Humanism through the letters of Poggio Bracciolini. This first overview will allow you to explore Italian literature from its complex and multicultural beginnings to its diffusion across Europe during the Renaissance.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN3333
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 3333 001/15813 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
501 Hamilton Hall
Steven Baker 3 2/18

ITAL UN3334 Introduction To Italian Literature, II. 3 points.

Prerequisites: ITAL UN2102 or the equivalent.

UN3334-UN3333 is the basic course in Italian literature. UN3334: Authors and works from the Cinquecento to the present. Taught in Italian.

Spring 2019: ITAL UN3334
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 3334 001/18693 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
Steven Baker 3 7/18

ITAL UN3335 Advanced Italian. 3 points.

Prerequisites: ITALUN2102 or the equivalent. If you did not take Intermediate Italian at Columbia in the semester preceding the current one, you must take the placement test, offered by the Italian Department at the beginning of each semester.

Written and oral self-expression in compositions and oral reports on a variety of topics; grammar review.  Required for majors and concentrators.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN3335
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 3335 001/61136 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
509 Hamilton Hall
Federica Franze 3 10/16
Spring 2019: ITAL UN3335
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 3335 001/24981 M W 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
Felice Beneduce 3 3/20

ITAL UN3336 Advanced Italian II: Italian Language & Culture. 3 points.

Prerequisites: ITAL V3335

Advanced reading, writing, speaking with emphasis on authentic cultural materials. Topic and semester theme varies.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN3336
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 3336 001/22054 T Th 6:10pm - 7:25pm
507 Hamilton Hall
Alessandra Saggin 3 4/16
Spring 2019: ITAL UN3336
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 3336 001/67259 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
Federica Franze 3 9/16

ITAL UN3337 Advanced Italian Through Cinema. 3 points.

Prerequisites: ITAL UN3335

Students will develop advanced language competence while analyzing and discussing Italian film comedies and their reflection of changing Italian culture and society. Films by Monicelli, Germi, Moretti, Wertmuller, Soldini and others.

ITAL UN3339 Learning Italian in Class and Online: A Telecollaboration with Italy. . 3 points.

Prerequisites: (ITAL UN2102) ITAL UN2102 or the equivalent. If you did not take Intermediate Italian at Columbia in the semester preceding the current one, you must take the placement test, offered by the Italian Department at the beginning of each semester.

The aim of the course is the intensive practice in the spoken and written language, through topics on current cultural issues assigned for in class and online discussions. Students will learn about current events through a varied selection of written and visual texts such as newspaper articles, authentic videos and in-person interviews. There will be an extensive work on vocabulary and grammar review. The course will be integrated by an online section, which will allow students to engage with the language and the topics selected, also outside of class. In particular, during the second half of the semester, we will partner with the students of a Master’s program in “Teaching Italian to foreigners” at an Italian University, for an unique online exchange program.


At the end of the course, students will have acquired a deeper knowledge of Italian contemporary life and culture, and improved both their written and oral communication skills, within specific socio-pragmatic areas.


Italian is the language of instruction and the use of English is not permitted in class nor during the online lessons.

ITAL UN3642 Road Trips: Travel in Italian Cinema. 3 points.

Explores the representation of national identity in Italian cinema from the Facist era to the present. Examines how both geography and history are used to construct an image of Italy and the Italians. Special focus on the cinematic representation of travel and journeys between North and South. Films by major neo-realist directors (Rossellini, De Sica, Visconti) as well as by leading contemporaries (Moretti, Amelio).

ITAL UN3645 Grand Tour in Italy. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Note: Italian is the language of instruction.

Course Description


            This course proposes a virtual tour of the country’s most famous sites, looking at the ways in which what is local and peculiar, diverse and marginal, contributes its distinctive style and character to the overall unity and uniqueness of Italy.  Each week we consider a different aspect of Italy’s richness and variety: from the evolution of its language/s and dialects to its humor; its art and landscapes; the music from ancient times to current pop songs; its cinema and web serials, its cuisine, the contributions of migrants, and much more.


            The course is highly interdisciplinary and will assist students in the development of their linguistic and cultural skills, while tracing the origins of most mainstream Italian cultural phenomena, and imparting an awareness of modern Italy's multiculturalism. 



CLIA GU3660 Mafia Movies: From Sicily to The Sopranos. 3 points.

Examines representations of the mafia in American and Italian film and literature. Special attention to questions of ethnic identity and immigration. Comparison of the different histories and myths of the mafia in the U.S. and Italy. Readings includes novels, historical studies, and film criticism. Limit 35

ITAL UN3993 Senior Thesis/Tutorial. 3 points.

Prerequisites: the faculty adviser's permission.

Senior thesis or tutorial project consisting of independent scholarly work in an area of study of the student’s choosing, under the supervision of a member of the faculty.

Fall 2018: ITAL UN3993
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ITAL 3993 002/15171  
Teodolinda Barolini 3 1/9
ITAL 3993 003/68968  
Elizabeth Leake 3 0/9
ITAL 3993 005/14312  
Konstantia Zanou 3 0/9

ITAL GU4019 Italian Histories, Italian Stories: Manzoni, Sciascia and Microhistory. 3 points.

Prerequisites: The class will be in Italian. The knowledge of Italian is required. However, students who understand Italian but prefer to discuss the texts in English are very welcome.

Between 1960 and 1980 Leonardo Sciascia and Italian micro-historians reflected extensively on the relation between history and fiction. How did they relate with nineteenth century Italian historical fiction? How did they use fiction and non-fiction as hermeneutical tools to understand the Italian past, and especially pre-modern Italy? How did Carlo Ginzburg and Leonardo Sciascia read Manzoni? And what did Sciascia find in Natalie Zemon Davis’ books? Are microhistory and global history compatible? What is history from ‘below’? Is it compatible with the history of the ‘in-between’? We will probe these questions of large import for both literary historians and historians through an examination of Alessandro Manzoni’s Storia della Colonna Infame, Italian historical non-fictions, such as Leonardo Sciascia’s inchieste, Nuto Revelli’s Il disperso di Marburg and Wu Ming’s Asce di guerra, and the masterpieces of Italian, European and American microhistory. Also we will explore the impact of Italian Microhistory on both contemporary American historiography and Italian non-fiction. Topics include pre-modern popular culture and literacy, minority and marginality, the Inquisition, individual identity, and the relation between pre-modern Italy, Europe and the global world.

ITAL GU4022 The Qur'an in Europe. 3 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Is the Qur’an translatable? Was the Qur’an translated? Are non Arabic-speaking Muslims allowed to translate the Qur’an? And what about non-Muslims? Did Muslims and non-Muslims collaborate in translating the text of the Qur’an into Latin and European vernaculars? This course focuses on the long history of the diffusion of the Qur’an, the Scripture of the Muslims, and one of the most important texts in the history of humanity. We will focus on reading and translation practices of the Qur’an in Europe and the Mediterranean, from the Middle Ages to the contemporary world. We will explore how European Muslims, such as Iberian moriscos, European Jews, as well as Orthodox, Protestants and Catholics read, copied, collected, translated and printed the Qur’an. We will also explore why the Qur’an was confuted, forbidden, burned and even eaten, drunk and worn along eight centuries of the history of Europe. This long excursus, based on a close reading of the Qur’an and on the discussion of the major themes this close reading proposes, will help us to understand the role of Islam and its revelation in the formation of European societies and cultures.  

ITAL GU4043 Italian Renaissance Literature and Culture. 3 points.

This course on Italian Renaissance literature and culture will pay special attention to the crossing of boundaries, whether socio-cultural, religious, linguistic, gendered, ethnic, or strictly geographical, in a range of fourteenth- to early seventeenth-century texts in a variety of genres, including travelogue, chivalric epic poetry, comedy, dialogues, and the novella, as well as political, philosophical, and scientific writing. Authors covered include Marco Polo, Leonardo Bruni, Pico della Mirandola, Boiardo, Ariosto, Machiavelli Castiglione, Beolco, Giraldi Cinzio, Tasso, Moderata Fonte, Tarabotti, and Galileo.  In English.

ITAL GU4055 Anthropology of Contemporary Italy: Pluralism, Creativity and Identity. 3 points.

Not offered during 2018-19 academic year.

This seminar examines ways in which Italy is understood and represented by Italians and non-Italians. It will analyze the formation of multiple discourses on Italy, how Italian culture and society are imagined, represented and/or distorted. Based on an anthropological perspective, this course will examine ways in which we can understand Italy through the intersections of pluralism, ethnicity, gender, and religion. The course will study how Italy strives for political and economic unity, while there is a concurrent push toward inequality, exclusion, and marginalization. Moreover, the course will analyze the revitalization of nationalism on one hand of regionalism on the other, and will focus on the concepts of territory, identity, and tradition. Short videos that can be watched on computer and alternative readings for those fluent in Italian will be assigned. There are no pre-requisites for this course.

ITAL GU4185 The Making of Italy: The Risorgimento in Global Context. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Knowledge of Italian is necessary for this course.

This course will examine the history of the Italian Risorgimento by following the major historiographical trends of the recent decades. First, it will approach the Risorgimento through the prism of cultural and intellectual history by investigating a series of topics, such as the discursive  patterns of the ‘Risorgimento canon’, the gendered tropes of nationalism, the creation of a new public sphere through operas, festivals and  plebiscites, the connection of nationalism with religion, and the relation of empire to nation and liberalism. Second, it will look at the  Risorgimento through the eyes of local and regional history by examining local patriotisms, revolutions and civil wars and the division between North and South. Finally, it will offer a new topography of Italian history by placing the Risorgimento in its Mediterranean and global context and by exploring its international aspects: the global icons that it produced (i.e. Garibaldi, Mazzini); the networks of exiles in other Mediterranean and European countries; the war volunteers; and the connection of Italian patriots with the wave of liberalism and revolution that swept the globe from India to Latin America.

ITAL GU4057 ANTHROPOLOGY OF ITALIAN FOOD, FASHION, & DESIGN. 3 points.

Not offered during 2018-19 academic year.

This colloquium examines the many meanings of food, fashion, designs, trends, and style, especially in Italian culture and tradition; how values and peculiarities are transmitted, preserved, reinvented, and rethought through a lens that is internationally known as "Made in Italy' ; how the symbolic meanings and ideological interpretations are connected to creation, production, and consumption of goods.  Based on an anthropological perspective and framework, this interdisciplinary course will analyze ways in which we can understand the 'Italian style' through the intersections of many different levels: political, economic, aesthetic, symbolic, religious, etc.  The course will study how fashion, food, and design can help us understand the ways in which tradition and innovation, creativity and technology, localism and globalization, identity and diversity, power and body, are elaborated and interpreted in contemporary Italian society, in relation to the European context and a globalized world.

Short videos that can be watched on the computer and alternative readings for those fluent in Italian will be assigned.

ITAL GU4086 Castiglione and the Italian Renaissance Court. 3 points.

Focus on Castiglione’s Book of the Courtier as educational treatise, philosophical meditation, sociopolitical document, and book of courtly manners; other courtly writings of the period, from Della Casa’s Galateo to Ariosto’s Satires to Bembo’s Asolani. Lectures in English; text in Italian, although comparative literature students who can follow with the help of translations are welcome.

ITAL GU4109 Writing the Self: the Tradition of Autobiography in Italy, 19th-20th Centuries. 3 points.

Not offered during 2018-19 academic year.

Against the backdrop of the heated critical debate on the boundaries and limitations of the autobiographical genre, this course addresses the modern and contemporary tradition of autobiographical writings, focusing in particular (but not exclusively) on exploring and positing the potential difference between male and female autobiographers. More specifically, we will question the adequacy of the traditional model of autobiographical selfhood based on the assumption of unified, universal, exemplary and transcendent self to arrive at an understanding of women's autobiography. Topics to be addressed include: the crisis of the subject, "je est un autre", the "man" with a movie camera, strategies of concealment and disclosures. Authors to be studied include: D'Annunzio, Pirandello, Svevo, Fellini, Moretti, Ortese, Ginzburg, Manzini, Cialente, Ramondino. In Italian

ITAL GU4420 The Window On the World: Reassessing Italian Neorealism. 3 points.

Not offered during 2018-19 academic year.

Roberto Rossellini, Vittorio De Sica, Luchino Visconti and other Italian filmmakers challenged modes of film production in vogue in the 1940s and 1950s, both in theoretical and practical terms. This course will analyze both the feature films and the theoretical writings of such directors as those mentioned and others, in order to investigate the modes of representation of reality in the immediate postwar years, their relation to the identity of the newborn Italian Republic, and their significance in post-WWII filmmaking. All readings and lectures in English; Films in Italian or French, with English subtitles.

CLIA GU4021 The Age of Romanticism Across the Adriatic. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Knowledge of Italian desirable but not necessary

This interdisciplinary seminar will study Romanticism as a literary trend, as much as a historical phenomenon and a life attitude. Romanticism is viewed here as the sum of the different answers to the sense of insecurity, social alienation and loneliness, provoked by the changing and frail world of the end of the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth century. We will investigate the Romantic ideology in relation to the trans-Adriatic world of Italy and Greece, an area that entered modernity with the particular lure and burden of antiquity, as well as through revolutionary upheaval. Students will be invited to read authors like Vittorio Alfieri, Ugo Foscolo, Silvio Pellico, Giacomo Leopardi, Alessandro Manzoni, Massimo d’Azeglio, and to reflect on themes such as Nostalgia and Nationalism, the Discovery of the Middle Ages, the Historical Novel, the Invention of Popular Tradition, the Fragmented Self, Autobiographical and Travel Writing, the Brigand Cult, Hellenism, Philhellenism, Orientalism and Balkanism, and others.

ITAL GU4502 Italian Cultural Studies I: From Unification to World War I. 3 points.

An interdisciplinary investigation into Italian culture and society in the years between Unification in 1860 and the outbreak of World War I. Drawing on novels, historical analyses, and other sources including film and political cartoons, the course examines some of the key problems and trends in the cultural and political history of the period. Lectures, discussion and required readings will be in English. Students with a knowledge of Italian are encouraged to read the primary literature in Italian.

ITAL GU4503 Italian Cultural Studies II: From World War I to the Present. 3 points.

An interdisciplinary investigation into Italian culture and society in the years between World War I and the present. Drawing on historical analyses, literary texts, letters, film, cartoons, popular music, etc., the course examines some of the key problems and trends in the cultural and political history of the period. Lectures, discussion and required readings will be in English. Students with a knowledge of Italian are encouraged to read the primary literature in Italian.

Hungarian Courses

HNGR UN1101 Elementary Hungarian I. 4 points.

Introduction to the basic structures of the Hungarian language. Students with a schedule conflict should consult the instructor about the possibility of adjusting hours.

Fall 2018: HNGR UN1101
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HNGR 1101 001/21433 T 10:10am - 12:00pm
501 Hamilton Hall
Carol Rounds 4 3/20
HNGR 1101 001/21433 Th 10:10am - 12:00pm
518 Hamilton Hall
Carol Rounds 4 3/20

HNGR UN1102 Elementary Hungarian II. 4 points.

Introduction to the basic structures of the Hungarian language. With the instructor's permission the second term of this course may be taken without the first. Students with a schedule conflict should consult the instructor about the possibility of adjusting hours.

Spring 2019: HNGR UN1102
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HNGR 1102 001/66542 T Th 10:10am - 12:00pm
501 Hamilton Hall
Carol Rounds 4 1/20

HNGR UN2101 Intermediate Hungarian I. 4 points.

Prerequisites: HNGR UN1101-UN1102 or the equivalent.

Further develops a student's knowledge of the Hungarian language. With the instructor's permission the second term of this course may be taken without the first. Students with a schedule conflict should consult the instructor about the possibility of adjusting hours.

HNGR UN2102 Intermediate Hungarian II. 4 points.

Prerequisites: HNGR UN1101-UN1102 or the equivalent.

Further develops a student's knowledge of the Hungarian language. With the instructor's permission the second term of this course may be taken without the first. Students with a schedule conflict should consult the instructor about the possibility of adjusting hours.

Spring 2019: HNGR UN2102
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HNGR 2102 001/16087 T Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
501 Hamilton Hall
Carol Rounds 4 1/18

HNGR UN3340 Advanced Hungarian Grammar. 3 points.

Prerequisites: HNGR UN2101 or the equivalent.

Advanced Hungarian Grammar focuses on the more complex syntactic/semantic constructions of Hungarian in addition to vocabulary enrichment. Readings in literature, oral presentations, translations, and essays serve to enhance the grammatical material.

HNGR UN3341 Advanced Hungarian II. 3 points.

Prerequisites: HNGR UN2101 - HNGR UN2102 and HNGR UN3340, or the equivalent.

This course has an emphasis on rapid and comprehensive reading of academic materials. In addition to weekly readings, oral presentations and written essays serve to improve fluency in all aspects of Hungarian.

HNGR UN3343 Hungarian Descriptive Grammar. 3 points.

This course is designed for those curious about the structure of Hungarian - an unusual language with a complex grammar quite different from English, or, indeed, any Indo -European language. The study of Hungarian, a language of the Finno-Ugric family, offers the opportunity to learn about the phonology of vowel harmony, the syntax of topic-comment discourse, verb agreement with subjects and objects, highly developed case systems and possessive nominal paradigms. In addition to its inflectional profile, Hungarian derivation possibilities are vast, combinatory, and playful. During the semester we will touch upon all the important grammatical aspects of Hungarian and discuss them in relation to general linguistic principles and discourse, and finally, through some text analysis, see them in action. Although the primary discussion will center on Hungarian, we will draw on comparisons to other Finno-Ugric languages, most notably Finnish and Komi; students are encouraged to draw on comparisons with their own languages of interest. No prerequisite. Counts as Core Linguistics.

Spring 2019: HNGR UN3343
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HNGR 3343 001/76395 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
Room TBA
Carol Rounds 3 5/18