General Information

Italian Minor

Five courses beyond the 100-level:
231
232
301
305 or 306
Topics course: 321, 322, 323 or 324

Note: Students receiving credit for the Italian studies major may not receive credit for the Italian minor.

Major

10 courses

1. Language in Context (5):
a. ITAL 231: Reading and Writing Contemporary Italian Culture
b. ITAL 232: Reading and Performing Italian Texts or 270: Italian Language in Context (offered in Bologna, fall semester) 
c. ITAL 301: The Discourse of Love
d. ITAL 305: Ideas of Italy or ITAL 306: Real and Imaginary Journeys
e. ITAL 400: Senior Seminar

2. Core Requirements (3):
a. Culture (1 course). 
A topics course on Italian cultural productions, practices and contexts: ITAL 321: Topics in Medieval and Early Modern Studies or 322: Dante's Divine Comedy; or ITAL 323: Topics in Modern and Contemporary Italian Studies or ITAL 324: Italian Cinema.

b. History (1 course). 
A course with a strong emphasis on Italian history such as: ITAL 321: Topics in Medieval and Early Modern Studies or ITAL 323: Topics in Modern and Contemporary Italian Studies (with approval of program coordinator when topic is pertinent, for example: "Filming the Making and Unmaking of Italy" or "Terrorism in Italian Film"); HIST 232: Modern Italy; HIST 223: Renaissance Europe; HIST 375 Europe's Dictators.

c. Visual Arts and Representations (1 course). 
A course with a strong emphasis on Italian visual arts and representations such as: ITAL 323: Topics in Modern and Contemporary Italian Studies (with approval of program coordinator when topic is pertinent, for example: "Representations of the Holocaust in Italian Cinema" or "Representations of Women in Italian Film and Media"); ITAL 324: Italian Cinema; ARTH 205: Reading Bologna (offered only in Bologna); or ARTH 300: Italian Renaissance Art 1250-1450 or ARTH 301: Italian Renaissance Art 1450-1563; ARTH 205: Michelangelo Man & Myth. Other courses with a strong visual component, such as architecture, sculpture, photography, television, and performance, may be eligible only when the topic is pertinent to Italian culture and must be approved by the program coordinator. Courses (such as ARTH 304: Southern Baroque) that analyze Italian visual arts and representations in a comparative context may be suitable as well, provided that students write their final papers on Italian culture and society. NOTE: ARTH 300, 301 and 304 prerequisite for Italian Studies major is ARTH 101 or 102 or permission of instructor. 

3. Area of Emphasis. (2 courses in one elective emphasis)
Two courses to be taken in one area of emphasis: (a) Humanities, (b) History, (c) European and Mediterranean Studies, or (d) Film and Media Studies. These courses are to be chosen in consultation with the advisor in Italian Studies. Other approved courses may be substituted for any course in an area of emphasis only when the contents of the course are suitable and if approved by the program coordinator. 

a. Humanities. 
ITAL 321: Topics in Medieval and Early Modern Studies; ITAL 322: Dante's Divine Comedy; CLST 224: Roman Archaeology; MUAC 351: Seminar in Medieval and Renaissance Music (such as "The Madrigal and Poetics in Renaissance Italy").

b. History. 
ITAL 323: Topics in Modern and Contemporary Italian Studies (such as "The Making and Unmaking of Italy"); CLST 253: Roman History; HIST 105: Medieval Europe; HIST 223: Renaissance Europe; HIST 232: Modern Italy. 

c. European and Mediterranean Studies. 
ITAL 323: Topics in Modern and Contemporary Italian Studies (such as "The Making and Unmaking of Italy" or "Italian Cookery: Practices, Culture, Identity" or "Italian Colonialism"); HIST 232: Modern Italy; HIST 358: 19-20th Century European Diplomacy; INTD 390: Intercultural Seminar (offered only in Bologna); POSC 250: Comparative West European Systems; POSC 275, 276 Studies in Modern European Politics (offered only in Bologna); POSC 276: Italian Politics (offered only in Bologna); POSC 290/ECON 214: European Economic Integration (offered only in Bologna). 

d. Film and Media Studies 
ITAL 324: Italian Cinema (such as "The History of Italian Cinema" or "The Cinema of Federico Fellini"); ITAL 323: Topics in Modern and Contemporary Italian Studies (such as "Terrorism in Italian Film" or "The Holocaust in Italian Cinema" or "The Representation of Women in Italian Media"). 

Honors

All senior students majoring in Italian Studies must complete the Senior Seminar (ITST 400). Students who wish to be considered for honors in Italian Studies must have an overall GPA of at least 3.40 and must complete an Independent Research Project (550) in addition to the Senior Seminar.  The students must identify a faculty member who is willing to serve as their Independent Research Project advisor, must submit a proposal, and must write a thesis, which will be evaluated by the Italian Studies faculty.  The final projects of the Independent Research Project and the Senior Seminar are separate and the students cannot work on the same topic for both courses.

Normally, honors projects are completed in the spring semester of a student’s senior year and are approved for one academic credit. Honors is a separate designation that appears on the transcript and diploma. In the event that the final project is not deemed worthy of honors, the student will still receive academic credit for their Independent Research Project (550).

Honors Timeline

1. The proposal must be submitted no later than two (2) weeks prior to the end of the fall semester of classes (the exact date will be designated by the Italian Studies Department) submit the proposal (5-7 pages). The proposal should provide a detailed description of the research project, as well as explain the questions to be addressed, the current state of scholarship on this issue, the project’s contribution to current scholarship, and a tentative answer to the research question (i.e. a “thesis statement”). A proposed outline of the thesis chapters (1 page), in Italian, should also be included. There should also be a fairly extensive bibliography (1-2 pages) that lists primary and secondary sources under separate headings. In the bibliography, the student will indicate which studies and documents s/he has already consulted as well as the materials s/he plans to review. The proposal must be written entirely in Italian.

2. Before the last day of classes in the fall semester, the Italian Studies Chair will inform the prospective honors students and their advisors whether the proposal has been approved, and if so, will provide some suggestions and concerns from the Italian Studies faculty.  Also, at that time, the coordinator will appoint a secondary advisor for the project.

3. By the end of the 2nd week of the spring semester, a revised proposal is due.

4. Four (4) weeks before the end of classes, a thesis, in Italian, of approximately 30 pages (excluding bibliography), should be submitted, at which time the project advisor will choose one (or two, if available) additional Italian Studies faculty members who will read and critique the paper.

5. During the week of final examinations, the student will meet with the entire committee of three members to present, discuss, and defend his/her work.

6. On the Friday of the week before graduation, the student will submit a revised version of the thesis, based on feedback offered during the discussion. 

7. If a student fails to meet the deadlines, to make the required revisions, or to fulfill any of the requirements s/he will forfeit the opportunity to receive Honors. The grade for the Independent Research Project (550) will be posted to the transcript, even if the student does not earn honors.

Internships

Internships may be available for interested students. In the past, students have completed internships in diverse places such as the Feminist Bookstore, the Bologna daily newspaper Il Resto del Carlino, the local chapter of Slowfood, a children's hospital and a middle school. The Department chairperson or the Coordinator in Bologna should be consulted for information.

Summer Immersion Program in Italy

The Department will periodically offer to students an immersion program in Italy during the summer. This program is of special interest to those who cannot go abroad during the academic year.

Opportunities for off-campus study

Junior Year
Students pursuing an Italian minor will be able to continue taking Italian language courses at the K. Robert Nilsson Center and other courses that may fulfill the minor, as well as other courses that may fulfill the minor requirements. In situations where high proficiency in Italian has been attained, students may also take courses at the University of Bologna.

The curriculum for students pursuing an Italian Studies major is comprised of three elements:

  1. K. Robert Nilsson Center courses which serve well the interdisciplinary character of the Italian Studies major. Students are encouraged to conduct research and to write their papers for these courses in Italian.
  2. Independent Studies, in Italian, involving specialized projects and using resources available only in Italian. Directed by on-site Italian faculty from the K. Robert Nilsson Center, the Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies, or the University of Bologna, one-credit independent studies will be grouped in small seminars.
  3. Courses at the University of Bologna chosen from a wide variety of university courses appropriate to the major. The Coordinator of Italian Studies should be contacted for information.

Co-curricular activities/programs

The Italian Studies Program sponsors many campus events and activities to help students enhance their knowledge of Italian language and culture. Students can apply to live at the Romance Language House where a native Italian student from the University of Bologna resides with other students who study Italian. Students are encouraged to participate in the weekly Tavola Italiana (Italian Table), where they dine in Italian alongside Italian faculty and language assistants. The Circolo Italiano (Italian Club) organizes a variety of social and cultural events during the academic year. Also offered is an Italian Film Series that features classic and contemporary Italian movies. For more information, visit  Italian Outside the Classroom  on the Dickinson Italian Studies website.

Courses

101 Elementary Italian
Intensive study of the fundamentals of Italian grammar, with a view to developing reading, writing, speaking, and understanding skills. Laboratory and other audiovisual techniques are used. Cultural elements are stressed as a context for the assimilation of the language.

104 Elementary Italian
Intensive study of the fundamentals of Italian grammar, with a view to developing reading, writing, speaking, and understanding skills. Laboratory and other audiovisual techniques are used. Cultural elements are stressed as a context for the assimilation of the language.
Prerequisite: 101 or the equivalent

116 Intermediate Italian
Intensive introduction to conversation and composition, with special attention to grammar review and refinement. Essays, fiction and theater, as well as Italian television and films, provide opportunities to improve familiarity with contemporary Italian language and civilization.
Prerequisite: 104 or the equivalent.

231 Reading and Writing Contemporary Italian Culture
Designed to increase student's awareness of various rhetorical conventions and command of written Italian through analysis and imitation of model texts of a literary and non-literary nature.
Two and a half hours classroom and one hour laboratory per week. Prerequisite: 116 or the equivalent. This course fulfills the WR graduation requirement. This course fulfills the WR graduation requirement and the DIV I. b. distribution requirement.

232 Reading and Performing Italian Texts
Designed to increase student's comprehension and command of spoken Italian, this course is also an initiation in everyday verbal transactions and cultural communication prevalent in contemporary Italy. Phonetics, oral comprehension, and verbal production are practiced through exposure to authentic documents usually of a non-literary nature, such as television news programs, documentaries, commercial advertisements, and excerpts from films.
Two and a half hours classroom and one hour laboratory per week. Prerequisite: 116 or the equivalent. This course fulfills the DIV I. b. distribution requirement.

301 The Discourse of Love
What is Love? Through a diverse selection of works from authors such as St. Francis, Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio, Lorenzo de' Medici, Pietro Aretino, Gaspara Stampa, and Veronica Franco, students will examine the nature of love from a variety of perspectives. From the spirituality of religion to the physicality of desire and attraction, this course will confront topics such as the medieval and Renaissance ideas of love (courtly love, the Dolce Stil Novo, and love sickness), theological notions of love (charity), different expressions of love (heterosexuality, same-sex attraction and polyamory), and transgressive types of love (lust, adultery, and prostitution).
This course is taught in Italian. Prerequisites: 231 and 232, or permission of the instructor. This course fulfills the DIV I. b. distribution requirement. Offered every year.

305 Ideas of Italy
In this course we study how Italian political thinkers, writers and intellectuals in different historical periods have constructed their own "idea" of Italy. We will analyze authors such as Niccolò Machiavelli, the forefather of modern political science, and Antonio Gramsci, an Italian philosopher and founder of the largest communist party in Western Europe. We also examine the role that film and literature played in the formation of a national consciousness, through selected readings by authors and directors such as Alessandro Manzoni, Gabriele D'Annunzio, Oriana Fallaci, Luchino Visconti and others.
This course is taught in Italian. Prerequisites: 231 and 232, or permission of the instructor. This course fulfills the DIV I. b. distribution requirement. Offered every two years.

306 Real and Imaginary Journeys
By exploring the inner conflicts of their own soul and venturing beyond the boundaries of their native culture, Italian authors - from Dante and Petrarch to Italo Calvino and Federico Fellini - have opened new paths that often influenced the development of Western art and literature and touched the lives of countless readers and viewers around the world. In this course, we use the theme of the journey to analyze the work of some of the most influential Italian authors and trace their cultural legacy.
This course is taught in Italian. Prerequisites: 231 and 232, or permission of the instructor. This course fulfills the DIV I. b. distribution requirement. Offered every two years.

321 Topics in Medieval and Early Modern Studies
In this course, students will study significant themes and values that inform Italian literature and culture of the Medieval and Early Modern periods. This course draws on a wide selection of sources including history, sociology, psychology, and popular culture. Topics may include: Petrarch and Petrarchism; Boccaccio and the Art of Story Telling, Niccolò Machiavelli and others. This course is offered in English. Italian Studies majors, Italian minors and INBM majors using this course to satisfy major/minor requirements will attend a discussion group in Italian and will write their papers in Italian. Upon successful completion of the work in Italian, students will receive a "FLIC: Italian" notation on their transcript.
Prerequisites: 231 if taken as Italian FLIC; none, if taking the English only portion. This course fulfills the DIV I. b. distribution requirement. Offered on an as-needed basis.

322 Dante's Divine Comedy
This topics course is on Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy. Although a special focus will be placed on the Inferno, which will be read in its entirety, various cantos from Purgatorio and Paradiso will also be studied. Aiding the students along their journey through Hell and beyond will be critical readings that consider the historical, social, cultural and literary context of the period. The poem will be read in English translation. Italian Studies majors, Italian minors and INBM majors using this course to satisfy major/minor requirements will attend a discussion group in Italian and will write their papers in Italian. Upon successful completion of the work in Italian, students will receive a "FLIC: Italian" notation on their transcript.
Prerequisites: 231 if taken as Italian FLIC; none, if taking the English only portion. This course fulfills the DIV I. b. distribution requirement. Offered every two years.

323 Topics in Modern and Contemporary Italian Studies
Study of significant themes and values that inform Italian culture and are informed by it. This course draws on a wide selection of sources including history, sociology, psychology, popular culture. Students in this course will concentrate on specific cultural, social or political issues, such as "Representations of the Holocaust and/or Terrorism in Italian Cinema;" "The Italian Southern Question;" "The Making and Unmaking of Italy," and others. This course is offered in English. Italian Studies majors, Italian minors and INBM majors using this course to satisfy major/minor requirements will attend a discussion group in Italian and will write their papers in Italian. Upon successful completion of the work in Italian, students will receive a "FLIC: Italian" notation on their transcript.
Prerequisites: 231 if taken as Italian FLIC; none, if taking the English only portion. This course fulfills the DIV I. b. distribution requirement. Offered on an as-needed basis.

324 Italian Cinema
This course is a general introduction to Italian cinema, from the origins to the present. It provides students with basic tools for film analysis and analyzes a selection of films and directors within their cultural and social contexts. Cross-listed with Film Studies 301.This course is offered in English. Italian Studies majors, Italian minors and INBM majors using this course to satisfy major/minor requirements will attend a discussion group in Italian and will write their papers in Italian. Upon successful completion of the work in Italian, students will receive a "FLIC: Italian" notation on their transcript.
Prerequisites: 231 if taken as Italian FLIC; none, if taking the English only portion. This course fulfills the DIV I. b. distribution requirement. Offered on an as-needed basis. This course is cross-listed as FLST 310.

400 Senior Seminar
Conceived as an integrative experience, this tutorial provides an opportunity for students to examine a specific theme or author from various perspectives. Independent research, under close supervision of a professor, will be shared with other seniors in regular discussion group meetings and will be articulated in a substantial critical paper at the end of the semester.
Prerequisite: Italian studies major or permission of the director of the Italian studies program.