Literature and Culture in Contemporary Italy

A.Y. 2020/2021
9
Max ECTS
60
Overall hours
SSD
L-FIL-LET/11
Language
Italian
Learning objectives
The course aims to provide some basic categories for analyzing literary texts, both in their formal (linguistic and structural) aspects and in their relationships with the historical and social context.
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of the course, the student must be capable to master the basic tools of the formal analysis and of the historical interpretation, to define them in theory and to apply them in a proper and autonomous way in text-reading.
Course syllabus and organization

A-D

Responsible
Lesson period
First semester
The lessons of the first semester will take place online on the Microsoft Teams platform, in a dedicated channel. They will be kept in sync, as scheduled by the timetable, but also recorded.
Course syllabus
The effort of growing up. Bildungsroman and Family Romance (1944-2011)
In its monographic part (Teaching Unit I and III), the course will study four important novels published between the end of the Second World War period and the beginning of the 2000s.
The Unit 1, The painful discovery of the world: the difficult summers of Agostino and Ario, will introduce the question of the Bildungsroman. Then we will compare two short novels, written during the Second World War, which are also two Bildungsromans The first, Alberto Moravia's "Agostino" (1944), is a recognized masterpiece by a world famous writer. The protagonist is a rich thirteen-year-old boy who has lost his father, who begins the painful transition from childhood to adult during a summer vacation in Versilia. Agostino discovers sexuality when he realizes that his mother, still young and beautiful, accepts the courtship of a young man. He also discovers the social difference and money, when he meets a gang of children of his own age but from humble social classes, who instead had to soon know the harshness of reality. One of the reasons for the novel's interest lies in the coherent and radical use of internal focus, that is, of the point of view of the protagonist, which slowly becomes aware of reality. With Pier Antonio Quarantotti Gambini's "The Wave of the Cruiser" (1947) we are faced with another masterpiece, but by a writer almost forgotten by critics and the public. This novel also takes place during a summer, in which another teenage and fatherless protagonist, Ario, discovers the disturbing reality of sex and love. Ario's point of view is, again, the filter through which representation passes. But in this case the story is centered not on a single character, but on a small group of teenagers: in addition to Ario, Berto and his sister Lidia, who becomes the object of desire and who in turn is discovering love.
Unit 3, The building and the neighborhood: the conflict between community and emancipa-tion, will study two important examples of novels where the Bildungsroman model meets that of the family saga, also because both novels are part of a much larger cycle. "The Fabbricone" (1961) is a novel of Giovanni Testori, a great writer not yet assimilated into the canons, who in the cycle The secrets of Milan represents the socio-economic dynamics and moral torments of the Milanese working classes, fully invested by the ambivalence of the modernization processes. In this case we are grappling with a plurality of stories, all of which refer to a large popular development in the Milanese suburbs, the so called "Fabbricone", and find their center in the love story of Rina and Carlo, who belong to two families enemies for political reasons. "The brilliant friend. Childhood, adolescence" (2011) by Elena Ferrante is the first of the four novels in the cycle that gave the mysterious writer worldwide success. In this case we have an internal narrator, Elena, who tells the story of herself and her friend Lila, with whom she develops a complex relationship of love and rivalry. The destinies of the two friends, opposite and complementary, unfold on the background of the Rione, a popular district of Naples, staging a tangle of family events, where the difficult conquest of freedom and identity clashes with misery, ignorance and violence of a world that is both archaic and very modern. Moreover, both in Testori and in Ferrante the relationships between dialect and Italian language are also a central issue.
The Unit 2, devoted to the Theory of Literature, will show some fundamental issues of the rela-tionships between Literature and historical context, from a multidisciplinary point of view, studying some crucial texts of Sociology, Literary Criticism and Philosophy between 19th and 20th Centuries.
Prerequisites for admission
Basic knowledge of Italian literary history from the Unification of Italy to the 1970s. Basic knowledge of narratology and rhetoric.
Teaching methods
Frontal lessons
Teaching Resources
Course:
The effort of growing up. Bildungsroman and Family Romance (1944-2011)

Programme of the Teaching Unit 1 (20 hours, 3 CFU):
The painful discovery of the world: the difficult summers of Agostino and Ario

Bibliography and other didactic materials Unit 1 (attending students):
Texts:
Alberto Moravia, Agostino (1944), Milano, Bompiani;
Pier Antonio Quarantotti Gambini, L'onda dell'incrociatore (1947), Milano, Mondadori (Oscar).

Critical Bibliography:
Simone Casini, "Un tempo oscuro". L'estate di Agostino e la rivelazione della realtà, in Alberto Moravia, Agostino, nuova edizione a cura di S. Casini, Milano, Bompiani (Classici Contemporanei Bompiani), pp. 5-40;
Riccardo Scrivano, Quarantotti Gambini, Firenze, La Nuova Italia, pp. 1-9 e 33-45.

Bibliography and other didactic materials Unit 1 (non attending students):
Texts:
Alberto Moravia, Agostino (1944), Milano, Bompiani;
Pier Antonio Quarantotti Gambini (1947), L'onda dell'incrociatore, Milano, Mondadori (Oscar).

Critical Bibliography:
Simone Casini, "Un tempo oscuro". L'estate di Agostino e la rivelazione della realtà, in Alberto Moravia, Agostino, nuova edizione a cura di S. Casini, Milano, Bompiani (Classici Contemporanei Bompiani), pp. 5-40;
Edoardo Sanguineti, «Agostino» e «La disubbidienza», in Id., Alberto Moravia, Milano, Mursia, pp. 45-74;
Riccardo Scrivano, Quarantotti Gambini, Firenze, La Nuova Italia, pp. 1-9 e 33-45;
Gian Antonio Cibotto, Quarantotti Gambini, "un italiano sbagliato", in P. A. Quarantotti Gambini, Opere scelte, a cura di M. Covacich, Milano, Bompiani, pp. 1479-1491;
Elvio Guagnini, La nuova stagione narrativa da Le trincee a L'onda dell'incrociatore, in "Il tempo fa crescere tutto ciò che non distrugge". L'opera di Pier Antonio Quarantotti Gambini nei suoi aspetti letterari ed editoriali, Pisa-Roma, Fabrizio Serra, pp. 89-95.

Programme of the Teaching Unit 2:
Sociology of the Literary Production (Institutional Part) (20 ore, 3 CFU)
Introduction to the Sociology of Literature

Bibliography Unit 2 (attending students):
Testi: G. Turchetta, Critica, letteratura e società, Roma, Carocci.
The attending students will prepare for the exam six of the twelve essays of the volume.

Bibliography Unit 2 (non attending students):
Testi: G. Turchetta, Critica, letteratura e società, Roma, Carocci.
The non attending students will prepare for the exam ten of the twelve essays of the volume.

Programme Teaching Unit 3 (20 hours, 3 CFU):
The building and the neighborhood: the conflict between community and emancipation

Bibliography and other didactic materials Unit 3 (attending students):
Texts:
Giovanni Testori, Il Fabbricone (1961), Milano, Feltrinelli;
Elena Ferrante, L'amica geniale. Infanzia, adolescenza (2011), Roma, edizioni e/o.

Critical Bibliography:
Diego Varini, Testori alla periferia del romanzo. Appunti su "Il Fabbricone", in «Studi e problemi di critica testuale», n. 96, 2018, pp. 47-62;
Tiziana de Rogatis, L'amicizia femminile e Smarginatura frantumaglia sorveglianza: tra figlie e madri, in Id., Elena Ferrante. Parole chiave, Roma, edizioni e/o, pp. 55-121.

Bibliography and other didactic materials Unità 3 (non attending students):
Texts:
Giovanni Testori, Il Fabbricone (1961), Milano, Feltrinelli;
Elena Ferrante, L'amica geniale. Infanzia, adolescenza (2011), Roma, edizioni e/o.

Critical Bibliography:
Diego Varini, Testori alla periferia del romanzo. Appunti su "Il Fabbricone", in «Studi e problemi di critica testuale», n. 96, 2018, pp. 47-62;
Annamaria Cascetta, Invito alla lettura di Testori, Milano, Mursia, pp. 45-67;
Tiziana de Rogatis, L'amicizia femminile e Smarginatura frantumaglia sorveglianza: tra figlie e madri, in Id., Elena Ferrante. Parole chiave, Roma, edizioni e/o, pp. 55-121;
Stiliana Milkova, Il Minotauro e la doppia Arianna: spazio liminale, labirinto urbano e città femminile ne L'amica geniale di Elena Ferrante, in «Contemporanea», n. 15, 2015, pp. 77-88.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam consists of an oral interview on the topics of the program, aimed at ascertaining the knowledge of the main topics, the acquisition of the basic methodological tools for the interpretation of literary texts and the ability to apply them appropriately and independently to the scheduled texts. Attendance at lessons is strongly recommended for better exam preparation.
However, the program already includes additions for students who could not attend. There are no intermediate tests, nor exams with partial programs: students must present all the teaching units to the exam, without exception. Students must register through the appropriate links on the University website: only in this case the exams can be regularly registered.
L-FIL-LET/11 - CONTEMPORARY ITALIAN LITERATURE - University credits: 9
Lessons: 60 hours
Professor: Turchetta Giovanni

A-Z

Lesson period
Second semester
L-FIL-LET/11 - CONTEMPORARY ITALIAN LITERATURE - University credits: 9
Lessons: 60 hours

E-N

Responsible
Lesson period
First semester
The lessons will be held in synchronous, using Microsoft Teams platform. The timetable remains unchanged and all the important information will be provided through the ARIEL website of the course.
Course syllabus and reference material will not be affected.
Written tests are not required. The examination will be held in oral form, on MS Teams platform or face-to-face, if the health situation will make it possible.
Course syllabus
Course Syllabus
The monographic sections (Units 1 and 3) focus on the clash between archaic traditions and modernity in 20th century Italy. Unit 1 analyzes two novels which illustrate the clash in the Sardinian scenarios. Unit 3 takes into consideration two works poised between fiction and non-fiction, which reconstruct the dynamics of society in two exemplary villages, located in Veneto and in Sicily.
Unit 2, which will be dedicated specifically to theory of literature, will depict a few fundamental issues of the relationships between literature and historical context, from a multidisciplinary point of view, studying some crucial texts of sociology, literary criticism and philosophy from 19th and 20th centuries.
Prerequisites for admission
Students should have: - an essential knowledge of Italian history, culture and literature from Unity to today; - a mastery of basic tools for the analysis of the literary text and the reading of critical essays; - a good command of written and spoken Italian language.
Teaching methods
The setting of the lessons blends a careful investigation of the style and narrative techniques with a sociological approach, in order to familiarize the student with the main issues concerning contemporary Italian literature and culture.
Teaching Resources
Here you can find the bibliography for students who attend the lessons, and the supplementary bibliography developed specifically for students who do not have the opportunity to attend the course.
The Critical Bibliography (Unit 1 and 3) will be uploaded on Ariel.

Unit 1. THE ANCIENT HEART OF SARDINIA

Attending students will study for the exam the notes taken in class and the following texts: G. Deledda, Canne al vento, any unabridged edition (italian); M. Murgia, L'accabadora, Einaudi, Torino.
Critical bibliography: V. Spinazzola, Grazia Deledda, narratrice di professione, in La modernità letteraria, il Saggiatore-FAAM, Milano 2001, pp. 216-240; N. Mihaljević, L'eutanasia, la morte e l'importanza della corporeità in "Accabadora" di Michela Murgia, in «Revista Internacional de Culturas y Literaturas», 20, aprile 2017, pp. 188-202.

Non-attending students will study for the exam the following texts: Testi: G. Deledda, Canne al vento, any unabridged edition (italian); M. Murgia, L'accabadora, Einaudi, Torino
Critical bibliography: V. Spinazzola, Grazia Deledda, narratrice di professione, in La modernità letteraria, il Saggiatore-FAAM, Milano 2001, pp. 216-240; N. De Giovanni, Come leggere "Canne al vento" di Grazia Deledda, Mursia, Milano 1993, pp. 50-55, 108-121; N. Mihaljević, L'eutanasia, la morte e l'importanza della corporeità in "Accabadora" di Michela Murgia, in «Revista Internacional de Culturas y Literaturas», 20, aprile 2017, pp. 188-202; A. Di Rollo, The Female Life Secret? Mother, Daughter, and New Family Paradigms in Michela Murgia's "Accabadora", in «Carte Italiane», 12 (1), 2019, pp. 89-104.


Unit 2. INTRODUCTION TO THE SOCIOLOGY OF LITERATURE

Attending students will study for the exam the notes taken in class and six of the twelve essays contained in the following text: G. Turchetta, Critica, letteratura e società, Carocci.
Non-attending students will study for the exam ten of the twelve essays contained in the following text:
G. Turchetta, Critica, letteratura e società, Carocci.



Unit 3: ITALIAN VILLAGES

Attending students will study for the exam the notes taken in class and the following texts: L. Sciascia, Le parrocchie di Regalpetra, Adelphi, Milano; L. Meneghello, Libera nos a malo, Rizzoli, Milano.
Critical bibliography: M. Onofri, Storia di Sciascia, Laterza, Roma-Bari 1994, pp. 38-56; V. Spinazzola, Era bello crescere a Malo, in Itaca, addio, il Saggiatore, Milano 2001, pp. 141-189.

Non-attending students will study for the exam the following texts: L. Sciascia, Le parrocchie di Regalpetra, Adelphi, Milano; L. Meneghello, Libera nos a malo, Rizzoli, Milano.
Critical bibliography: M. Onofri, Storia di Sciascia, Laterza, Roma-Bari 1994, pp. 38-56; B. Pischedda, Sciascia neorealista, in Mettere giudizio, Diabasis, Reggio Emilia 2006, pp. 92-101; V. Spinazzola, Era bello crescere a Malo, in Itaca, addio, il Saggiatore, Milano 2001, pp. 141-189; E. Pellegrini, Luigi Meneghello, Cadmo, Firenze 2002, pp. 45-58.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam consists of an oral interview on the topics of the syllabus, whose purpose is to ascertain the knowledge of the main issues, the acquisition of the basic methodological tools for the interpretation of literary texts and the ability to apply them appropriately and autonomous to the scheduled texts.
Attendance at lessons is strongly recommended for better exam preparation. However, the syllabus already includes additions for students who could not attend.
There are no intermediate tests, nor partial exams: students must present all the teaching units to the exam, without exception. Students must register through the appropriate links on the University website: only in this case the exams can be regularly registered.
L-FIL-LET/11 - CONTEMPORARY ITALIAN LITERATURE - University credits: 9
Lessons: 60 hours

O-Z

Responsible
Lesson period
First semester
The face-to-face lessons will be replaced by two complementary methods of telematic delivery of teaching, synchronous and asynchronous, which will be held on the TEAMS channel of the Course. The synchronous lessons will be held according to the schedule of the first semester
All recorded lessons and uploaded ppt will remain available for the entire academic year on Ariel.
Course syllabus
«Com'è bella la città / com'è grande la città». Young People in Search of Themselves in Milan in the 20th Century.
In its monographic part (Teaching Unit I and III), the course will study themes and forms four literary works published between the Fourties and Sixties of the 20th century. The main characters in these works, set in Milano, are young people between the ages of fifteen and thirty, each in his own way committed to entering into adulthood through a conflict with the city.
The first Unit, Working in the City: Mirages and Defeats, intends to present, by means of the works of Marotta and Pagliarani, a portrait of Milan as economic capital of Italy between the first Post-war period and Economic Boom.
The third Unit (second section of the monographic part of the course), Succeeding in the World. At Any Cost?, will study the Giovanni Testori's and Umberto Simonetta's masterpieces Il dio di Ro-serio and Tirar mattina, characterized by a very peculiar documentary verve, both sociologically and psychologically. These books portray two opposite characters carving out a niche for themselves in the Milan of the Fifties and Sixties.
The Unit 2, Introduction to the Sociology of Literature, devoted to the Theory of Literature and to the Sociology of Literature, will show some fundamental issues of the relationships between Litera-ture and historical context, from a multidisciplinary point of view, studying some crucial texts of So-ciology, Literary Criticism and Philosophy between 19th and 20th Centuries.
Prerequisites for admission
- The student must know the fundamental historical-social, cultural and literary dynamics in twentieth-century Italy.
- The student must have the ability to read, understand and analyze literary texts in Italian.
Teaching methods
Taught class on Teams.
Teaching Resources
PART 1
- Giuseppe Marotta, "A Milano non fa freddo" [1947], ed. by Luca Daino, Milano, Unicopli, 2016.
- Elio Pagliarani, "La ragazza Carla" [1960], il Saggiatore, Milano, 2016 (E-book); or in ID., "Tutte le poesie (1946-2011)", il Saggiatore, Milano, 2019.

Critical Bibliography:
Luca Daino, "Sul serio c'è da ridere", introduzione a Giuseppe Marotta, "A Milano non fa freddo", Unicopli, Milano, 2016, pp. 7-21.
- Oreste del Buono, "Ricordo di don Peppino", introduzione a Giuseppe Marotta, "A Milano non fa freddo", Mondadori, Milano, 1972, pp. V-XVI (DISPENSA).
- Andrea Cortellessa, "La parola che balla", introduzione a Elio Pagliarani, "Tutte le poesie (1946-2005)", Garzanti, Milano, 2006, pp. 14-31 (DISPENSA).

Additions for Non-attending Students:
- Carlo Bo, Introduzione a Giuseppe Marotta, "Opere", Bompiani, Milano, 1974, pp. 7-12 e 15-17 (DISPENSA).
- Marianna Marrucci, "Effetti di romanzizzazione in Elio Pagliarani", in «Moderna», 2, 2000, pp. 137-166 (DISPENSA / tralasciare i passi barrati).

PART 2
- G. Turchetta, Critica, letteratura e società, Carocci, Roma.
Attending students will study SIX of the twelve essays contained in the volume.
Non-attending students will study TEN of the twelve essays contained in the volume.

PART 3
- Giovanni Testori, "Il dio di Roserio" (1954), Feltrinelli, Milano 2018; also in Id., "Opere", 1 (1943-1961), ed. by Fulvio Panzeri, Bompiani, Milano, 1996, pp. 67-194.
- Umberto Simonetta, "Tirar mattina", Baldini&Castoldi, Milano 2018.

Critical Bibliography
- Vittorio Spinazzola, "A Roserio un delitto senza castigo", in Id. "L'egemonia del romanzo", il Saggiatore / FAAM, Milano, 2007, pp. 252- 266 (DISPENSA);
- Gianni Turchetta, "Lo spasma dello spirito e lo spasma della materia: I segreti di Milano di Giovanni Testori", in Milano da leggere, a cura di B. Peroni, Ufficio Scolastico lombardo, 2005, pp. 88-102 (DISPENSA).
- Luca Daino, "«Non ci ho niente da spartire con nessuno». Saggio su «Tirar mattina» di Umberto Simonetta", «Allegoria», 80, luglio-dicembre 2019, pp. 125-147 (DISPENSA).
- Arno Scholz, "La mimesi del parlato e varietà substandard nei romanzi degli anni Sessanta di Umberto Simonetta", in Id., "Subcultura e lingua giovanile in Italia. Hip-hop e dintorni", Roma, Aracne, 2004, pp. 111-123 (DISPENSA / tralasciare i passi barrati).

Additions for non-attending students:
- Luca Daino, "I «Segreti» del cuore nella Milano di Giovanni Testori", in Massimo Prada, Giuseppe Sergio (a cura di), "Italiani di Milano. Studi in onore di Silvia Morgana", Ledizioni, Milano, pp. 729-745 (DISPENSA).
- Luca Daino, "Uno contro tutti. La narrativa di Umberto Simonetta", in Id. (a cura di), "Un milanese non tanto regolare. Studi e testimonianze su Umberto Simonetta", Unicopli, Milano, pp. 25-42 (DISPENSA).
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam consists of an oral interview on the topics of the program. The knowledge of the main topics will be evaluated, the acquisition of the basic methodological tools for the interpretation of literary texts and the ability to apply them appropriately and autonomously to the texts in the program.
L-FIL-LET/11 - CONTEMPORARY ITALIAN LITERATURE - University credits: 9
Lessons: 60 hours
Professor: Daino Luca