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CODE 55867
  • 9 cfu during the 1st year of 8740 LINGUE E CULTURE MODERNE (L-11) - GENOVA
    LANGUAGE Italian
  • SEMESTER 2° Semester
    SECTIONING This unit is divided into 3 sections:


    The course is part of the Basic Learning Activities for the Degree Course of Modern Languages and Cultures, and bestows 9 ECTS, corresponding to 54 hours of classroom teaching and 171 hours reserved for personal study. It introduces the student to the study of major authors, most significant works, main poetics and most relevant cultural movements of Italian Literature history, from its origins to the 20th century.




    The course aims to provide a picture of the Italian literary tradition from its origins onwards using exemplary texts, with reference to the different styles and genres, to the analysis of texts and cultural contexts, and to relations with foreign cultures.


    The course aims to illustrate (in a historical-critical perspective) a selection of significant works and authors of Italian literature, providing students with the essential conceptual and methodological tools to understand the poetic language and analyze a literary passage from a content and metric-stylistic perspective.

    At the end of the course the student will be able to:

    a) recognize and explain the most important moments of the Italian literary tradition

    b) interpret, paraphrase and analyse autonomously literary passages in poetry and prose, recognising their structural aspects (genre, metric form, rhetorical apparatus) and linking them to the historical-cultural contexts in which they were composed

    c) make appropriate use of literary criticism terminology

    d) compare passages from different periods and authors

    e) explain and discuss the topics dealt with in written and oral form with clarity and language properties.


    Basic knowledge (at high school level) of the history of Italian literature.


    The lessons will be held in person with the possibility of distance learning (confirmation will be given as soon as possible) via Microsoft Teams, channel “Lezioni di Letteratura italiana C (LCM) - a.a. 2021-2022”, code tl3bor2. The course will therefore include additional teaching tools (slides, audio PowerPoint, study support tools) that will be made available on a special section of the AulaWeb e-learning portal. During the lessons, questions and remarks by the students will be solicited.


    Module 1

    Self-study of an anthology of texts, representative of the most important authors of Italian literature from the thirteenth to the early twentieth century. These excerpts – accompanied by short introductions and analysis sheets – will be available on the e-learning portal of the University of Genoa (AulaWeb) from the beginning of the course. In addition to these handouts, students can improve their study of the anthologized authors by using a textbook of Italian literature.

    Module 2

    The lessons will focus on the relationships between environment and literature. Particularly, the following topics will be argued:

    a) Geographies of the beyond: Dante’s journey in the Divina Commedia

    b) Escaping from the court: pastoral landscapes and false idylls in Tasso’s Gerusalemme liberata

    c) For a ‘green literature’: urban spaces in Calvino and other authors in the age of the Italian Miracle

    Students who, for justified reasons, can not attend at least 50% of the lessons (i.e. at least 27 of the 54 hours of classroom teaching) are required to contact the lecturer at the beginning of the course in order to agree on an alternative programme and the proper bibliography. It is also advisable to attend the first lesson, during which the teaching programme and the exam rules will be presented.


    Module 1

    - handouts in AulaWeb (for the anthological section)

    Module 2

    - Dante Alighieri, Divina Commedia, ed. by Anna Maria Chiavacci Leonardi, Milano, Mondadori; or ed. by Giorgio Inglese, Roma, Carocci; or ed. by Bianca Garavelli, Milano, Bompiani (only the passages read in class)

    - Torquato Tasso, Gerusalemme liberata, ed. by Franco Tomasi, Milano, Rizzoli BUR, 2009 (only the passages read in class).

    - Italo Calvino, La speculazione edilizia, Milano, Mondadori, 2016.

    - Italo Calvino, La nuvola di smog - La formica argentina, Milano, Mondadori, 2019.

    - Any additional reading available on AulaWeb during the course.

    The list could be subject to change and it is recommended to wait for the start of the lessons and the presentation of the programme by the lecturer before purchasing or borrowing.

    Non-attending students are required to contact the lecturer to agree on a specific bibliography.



    The starting date of the lessons will be announced as soon as possible.

    Class schedule




    The examination will take place in a single oral test covering the entire programme, consisting of the selection of anthological texts (module 1) and the topics presented during the lectures (module 2). It is not possible to split the examination into two separate sessions.

    Unless otherwise specified due to the evolution of the pandemic, the exam will take place in person. Otherwise, if safety standards cannot be guaranteed for any reason, the exam will be provided on Microsoft Teams, channel Esami di Letteratura italiana A, B, C – LCM, code: 309or53.

    To take part in the exams, students must register at least five days before the date of the exam at

    Further information will be provided during the lessons.


    The oral exam tests the expertise to paraphrase and comment a literary text in poetry or prose. It aims to assess the skill to contextualise the texts in the frame of the Italian cultural history; to illustrate their metrical and stylistic features; to make connections and comparisons among different authors and works, to expose the contents with an appropriate language and to discuss the topics learned during the lessons.

    Exam schedule

    Date Time Location Type Notes


    Non-attending students, as well as attending ones, are kindly requested to register for the course in AulaWeb.