Imagining Italy in Anglo-American Literature

Instructor: Peter Goodrich

Location: Macerata

Term: Spring semester 2014 only

Language: English

Contact Hours: 45

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Course Description

The Mediterranean peninsula and islands of Italy have always served the imaginations of English and American writers as an exotic geography— a near-oriental space of coasts and mountains, ancient cities and towns, mystery, romance, intrigue and spirit. From early times, it has been a major destination of Christian pilgrims, wealthy and aristocratic folk on the Grand Tour of European culture, artists and writers seeking inspiration from its treasures. For English and American writers in particular, it is a crossroads of imagination and desire.

This course samples many different modes of writing about Italy and the Italians by a broad spectrum of English and Americans from late medieval times to the present to stretch your imaginations and sense of place. By exploring the experiences of English-speakers in Italy through their writing— including many of the places visited on program excursions— it will help students to conceptualize their own encounters with Macerata and the country.