Italian Department


Courses of Study

IT125f    Italian I Basic comprehensive course for students with little or no previous knowledge of Italian. Focus is on developing the reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills needed to gain fluency in Italian and on familiarizing students with basic aspects of Italian culture and geography. Learning in the classroom takes place entirely in Italian and is task based, involving group activities, interviews with fellow students, and role-playing exercises. Four credit hours. Cannamela
[IT125T]    Italian I in Genoa Basic comprehensive course for students with little or no previous knowledge of Italian. Focus is on developing the reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills needed to gain fluency in Italian and on familiarizing students with basic aspects of Italian culture and geography. Learning in the classroom takes place entirely in Italian and is task based, involving group activities, interviews with fellow students, and role-playing exercises. A full immersion environment allows students to continually practice what they learn, while enjoying the beauty of Italy. Estimated cost: $3,500. Three credit hours.
IT126s    Italian II Continued basic comprehensive course for students with elementary knowledge (Italian 125 or equivalent) of Italian. Focus is on continuing development of the reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills gained in Italian I and on increasing students' familiarity with aspects of Italian culture and geography. Learning in the classroom takes place entirely in Italian and is task based, involving group activities, interviews with fellow students, and role-playing exercises. Prerequisite: Italian 125 or equivalent. Four credit hours. Nardi, Rizzo
IT127f    Italian III Continued practice in listening and speaking skills; grammar review, with greater emphasis on writing. Reading and conversation topics taken from contemporary Italian literature; course materials convey a sense and understanding of contemporary Italian society. Prerequisite: Italian 126 or equivalent. Four credit hours. Rizzo
IT128s    Italian through Film and Visual Culture Through an in-depth study of film and visual media, students will improve their understanding of Italian language and culture as well as master increasingly complex grammatical structures. Study of different aspects of Italian society and history as depicted in film, television, and the visual arts. Oral and written work will allow students to improve linguistic skills and expand cultural knowledge creatively. Prerequisite: Italian 127 or equivalent. Four credit hours. Cannamela
IT141f    Introduction to Italian Literary Studies: Poets, Lovers, Revolutionaries In this discussion-intensive course, we will explore the most enduring topics of Italian culture: the nature of love, the role of the artist in society, and the experience of time and death. Students will learn about different artistic genres (lyric poetry, short story, novel, film, contemporary song) and hone analytic skills and writing (rhetorical figures, form-content, stylistics). Students will become familiar with key periods of Italian culture and famous authors (Dante, Boccaccio, Petrarch, Leopardi, Montale, Moravia, Maraini, Deledda, Calvino). In Italian. Prerequisite: Italian 128 or equivalent. Four credit hours. L. Rizzo
[IT153]    Modern and Contemporary Italian Fiction in Translation in Verona This course in Italian fiction, held in Verona, Italy, will offer a close study of four authors whose work spans the 20th century. Readings will include Lia Levi, The Jewish Husband; Ennio Flaiano, A Time to Kill; Elena Ferrante, My Brilliant Friend; and Antonio Tabucchi, Pereira Declares. Includes field trips to Rome and Italian cultural centers around Verona. Prerequisite: For more information, contact Patrick Brancaccio (pbranca@colby.edu). Three credit hours. L.
IT235fs    Italian Conversation An informal, weekly, small-group meeting for conversation practice, led by the Italian language assistant. Topics will vary, to include everyday life experience, contemporary culture and media, and literature. Conducted in Italian. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: Italian 127 (may be taken concurrently) or prior study-abroad experience in Italy. One credit hour. Nardi
IT242s    Italian Ecopoetics: Beauty, Loss, Desire In the last few decades, literature and the arts have addressed the environmental crisis through creative representations. Yet, are these ecopoetics exclusively environmentalist works? Or can more traditional nature writing foster an ecocritical discourse? This course explores these key questions by investigating how in the 20th and 21st centuries Italian poets, artists, and directors have reworked the classical motif of the beautiful place—a place where beauty, loss, and desire intermingle. Beauty surprisingly becomes a lens to represent and interpret the complex interconnection of environmental and sociocultural issues. Taught in English. Four credit hours. L. Cannamela
[IT255]    Modern Classics, Italian Style An overview of some of the most relevant and interesting texts (visual, cinematic, literary, and musical) of the 20th century, while strengthening the linguistic skills acquired so far. We will begin with Futurismo, the first of the historical avant-gardes, an artistic movement that originated in Italy and set out to change everything: music, theater, literature, painting, sculpture, and food. Every week students will engage a different text, from pop music to cinema and literature, learning how to appreciate its history and to enjoy its beauty. Prerequisite: Italian 128. Four credit hours. L.
IT346f    Geographies of R/existence: 70s Liberation Movements in Italy Explores three Italian liberation movements of the 1970s-early 1980s: the femminismo della differenza (feminism of sexual difference), the gay liberation front (in particular, the radical thought of Mario Mieli), and the trans* movement. The goal is to investigate how these interrelated movements trace new embodied and political geographies. The Italian 1970s debate about gender and sexuality becomes a platform that can spur dialogue across cultures while suggesting new modes of thinking, doing, and being. Taught in English. Boundaries and Margins humanities lab. Four credit hours. I. Cannamela
[IT356]    Introduction to Dante's Divine Comedy (in English) An introduction to Dante, his times, and his cultural milieu through a critical reading of The Divine Comedy and other selected works. We will investigate Dante's relationship with authority, tradition, and faith, and explore his particular understanding of love as a path to knowledge and of literature as a way to salvation. Students will be challenged to find Dante's lasting influence on contemporary culture in the works of modern authors, both in the Italian-speaking and English-speaking worlds. All lectures and class materials will be in English. One additional weekly hour of discussion in Italian will be open to Italian minors and all who are interested. Four credit hours. L.
[IT357]    F for Fake: Forgery, Fiction, Art of Lying (in English) Traces the evolution and explores the meaning of fakes, fiction, and hoaxes in Western art and literature in order to call into question conventional ideas of authorship, readership, and text. The seminar will begin by defining core terms such as forgery, parody, hoax, and fiction. We will see how each of these terms is defined by a particular author/audience relation. Subsequently, we will be looking at a series of "case studies" containing historical examples from each of the terms, supplemented with a selection of critical readings that will enhance students' appreciation of the aesthetic and epistemological implications of the texts at issue. Taught in English. Four credit hours. L.
IT373s    Italian Food in Practice: A Hands-on Cultural History We will trace the historical evolution of Italian food culture in the geographical and cultural context of the Mediterranean since classical times. The focus will be on understanding the extraordinary significance of food for Italian national identity by exploring its evolution through various historical, cross-cultural, and theoretical perspectives, drawing from history, anthropology, sociology, art, and literature. During the weekly lab we will familiarize ourselves with ingredients, practice basic cooking techniques, learn fundamental preparations, and recreate classic Italian recipes. Prerequisite: Italian 141. Four credit hours. Rizzo
[IT375]    Introduction to Italian Cinema (in English) Offers an introduction to Italian film from the 1950s to the present day, with special emphasis on commedia all'italiana (Italian-style comedy, 1950s-1970s). Beyond their ability to entertain, these popular films also served as a crucial means for exploring via humor the social and political upheaval unfolding throughout Italy during the last several decades. Skills of critical analysis will be honed through readings on the history and theory of cinema and screenings of films by such celebrated directors as Fellini, De Sica, Monicelli, Germi, Wertmüller, and others. Four credit hours. A.
IT491f, 492s    Independent Study Individual projects in areas where the student has demonstrated the interest and competence necessary for independent work. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor. Two to four credit hours. Faculty