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CODE 65308
SEMESTER 2° Semester



The teaching will be divided into two parts: 6 CFU: 36 h. of frontal teaching; 9 CFU: 54 h. of frontal teaching The first 36 hours will be dedicated to the monographic theme, that is the literary and cultural relationships between Italy and Poland, the second part (18 h) will be an anthological panorama of Polish literature from the late nineteenth century to today.

The central core of the 6 CFU course will consist of four meetings via Teams with authors in Italian who have written about Poland



The aim of this teaching is to make the student approach to the very rich and articulated literary heritage of Poland, from the XVIIII century until nowadays

At the end of the course, the student should be able to find an orientation in the geographical and cultural space of Poland and to individuate some of its more important peculiarities on a European contest


At the end of the course, students must be able to orient themselves and understand Polish literature of the twentieth century, in particular as regards the general themes of teaching. They will have to know at least in broad terms the complex geo-political history of Poland of the last century. They will also have acquired a first knowledge of translation techniques from Polish into Italian and will be able, through group work and on-line support, to carry out simple translations from literary texts.


The accomplishment of at least one year of Polish Literature


Frontal lessons via Teams or Aulaweb platform (first semester), in presence, if possibile, on the second semester. Reading, explanation and commentary of some of the main texts. At least once during the semester students will be asked to prepare, in small groups of two or three people, a brief comment on one of the topics covered and to present it to the rest of the class


The complex and dramatic cultural and literary history of Poland from the birth of the Second Republic to the present day, through the prism of Polish Jewish relations

The course is divided into two parts: during the first one (6 CFU, 36 h), it will focus on the specific theme of the self-representation in literature of Polish Jewish authors, writing in Polish. These include some of the central literary personalities of the period under consideration, from Bruno Schulz (1892-1942) to Julian Tuwim (1894-1953) and others. This will provide a broad panorama of Polish literature from the 1930s to the present day. The second part of the course (an additional 18 hours, for a total of 9 CFU) will consist of a general overview of the major literary currents and historical-political events from Young Poland to the present day.


Key words:

Minority/Majority; Tradition/Modernity; Anti-Semitism; Shoah; Revolt, Rebellion; Stereotype; Self-representation; Integration; Assimilation; Acculturation



Mandatory Readings:


Storia della Letteratura Polacca a cura di Luigi Marinelli, Einaudi 2004, da p. 324 alla fine


Three volumes will be read, one for each thematic group:

Before the Catastrophe:
Bruno Schulz, The Cinnamon-coloured Shops and The Sanatorium at the Sign of the Hourglass, Einaudi 2001 (excerpts);
Kazimierz Brandys, Samson, E/O 1987, pp. 178.
Jozef Hen, Via Nowolipie. A Varsavia prima del ghetto, Giuntina 1883, pp. 311 (excerpts).
Julian Stryjkowski, Austeria. Un oste ebreo e la fine del mondo, E/O 1984, pp. 188. 
Aleksander Wat, The Wandering Jew, Salerno 1995, pp. 139.

The ghettos, the lagers, extermination and revolt:
Janusz Korczak, Diary from the Ghetto, Luni 1997, pp. 123
Henryk Grynberg, The War of the Jews, E/O 1992, pp. 107.
Marek Edelman, Il ghetto di Varsavia lotta, Giuntina 2012, pp. 115.
Julian Tuwim, Noi ebrei polacchi, Level Four 2009, pp. 173.
Ida Fink, Frammenti di tempo, Giuntina 2002, pp. 182.
Hanna Krall, Arriving Before the Lord God. Conversation with Marek Edelman, Giuntina 2010, pp. 136.
Adolf Rudnicki, Cronache dal ghetto, Marsilio 1995, pp. 377 (excerpts).

The post-war period:

Henryk Grynberg: Family Portraits, E/O 1994;
Hanna Krall, The dibbuk and other stories, La Giuntina 1993, pp. 227 (excerpts).
Jadwiga Maurer, Counterfigures. Tales of the war and post-war period, Giuntina 2011, pp. 213 (excerpts). 
Bozena Keff, Mother, Homeland, Lithos 2010, pp. 113.
Jozef Hen, The Eye of Dayan, Giuntina 1992, pp. 198.


Before accessing the exam, at least a week in advance, all students, whether attending or not, will have to prepare a short paper (one or two pages), on one of the subjects of the course, following the instructions in the file Norme per tesi e tesine available on the Teacher Page





October 12, 2022




The oral exam will allow to evaluate the student's ability to put in relation the various topics discussed during the course. During the exam, which includes open questions and feedbacks on the entire program covered, will be evaluated the quality of the presentation, the correct use of the vocabulary (in particular in relation to the literary movements and the currents of thought studied), the capacity of critical and temporal orientation. Attendance and active participation in the lessons and at the conferences, which are an integral part of the teaching, is also obviously evaluated.




The student will demonstrate to have assimilated the program, to have acquired the basic knowledge provided during the teaching, to be able to elaborate a short speech both on the subject at will and on those required and to comment on the texts studied during the course semester, placing them in the Polish and European historical and cultural context. Attendance and active participation in the lessons will not only facilitate the exam path but will also be evaluated in the final score.
The essay submitted before the exam will be discussed and evaluated

Exam schedule

Data Ora Luogo Degree type Note
25/01/2023 09:00 GENOVA Orale aula H
07/02/2023 09:00 GENOVA Orale aula H
08/06/2023 09:00 GENOVA Orale aula H
28/06/2023 11:00 GENOVA Orale aula H
13/09/2023 11:00 GENOVA Orale aula M
27/09/2023 11:00 GENOVA Orale aula H


Polish students may read the bibliograhy in the original language