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COURSE NAME: "Introduction to the Study of Italian Literature"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Fall 2019

INSTRUCTOR: Anna Mauceri Trimnell
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: MW 11:30-12:45 PM
PREREQUISITES: Prerequisite: IT 302 or permission of the instructor
OFFICE HOURS: by appointment

The course will introduce students to the study of Italian literature; it is designed for those students who have reached 300-level proficiency in Italian language and also functions as a preparatory course for those who wish to study Italian literature at higher levels. The first part of the course focuses on a preliminary explanation of basic literary terminology and teaches students to recognize codes and genres in a limited selection of Italian literary texts. In the second part of the course, students will read samples from significant works of Italian literature in conjunction with selected passages from the canon of Italian literary criticism. They will practice their critical and writing skills by applying the concepts learned during the course to the analysis and reading of the literary texts under consideration. At an introductory level, students will begin to appreciate the difference between commentary and criticism and between both historical and formal approaches to the study of Italian literature.
The first part of the course focuses on a preliminary explanation of basic literary terminology and teaches students to recognize styles and genres in a selection of Italian literary texts. The focus will be on a close examination of methods of critical analysis and vocabulary used in literary study and on linguistic and stylistic aspects of textual analysis.

The second, and wider, part of the course, is divided into three sections: prose, poetry and drama. In each section students will read samples of significant works of Italian literature in conjunction with selected passages from the canon of Italian literary criticism. Emphasis is on the stylistic features of each text and issues such as cultural context and gender.


The course will help students

to expand their knowledge of literary terminology

to be familiar with the basics of critical interpretation and textual analysis 

to distinguish historical and linguistic approaches


Class participationStudents are required to come to class ALWAYS prepared on readings and to actively partecipate to class discussions20%
Take home questionnaires (2)Questionnaires on material covered in class. Students are required to expand the required readings with further research (at least 2 other sources). Answered should be developed in an academic format (MLA style). Students with grammar and language problems ARE REQUIRED to work REGULARLY on their written assignments at the Writing Center. This is not a language course but the Instructor cannot ignore spelling, grammar, synthax mistakes when grading.40%
Final ExamIn class cumulative final exam.40%

AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the cour
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

Regular attendance and active participation are essential component of the learning process. Students are allowed 3 unexcused absences. every unjustified absence thereafter will result in the lowering of your grade.
If you should miss a class, please contact another student to find out what was covered that day so that you will be prepared for the next class. 


- leave the room as it is distracting to the professor and to your classmates;
- answer your cell phone, read or send text messages; 
- use your computer for anything not related to the class (e.g. Facebook).

The JCU Foreign Language Resource Center offers tutoring sessions free of charge. The FLRC is located at the Tiber Campus on the first floor. To schedule an appointment with a tutor (or a writing coach for upper-level courses), please use the online booking system.

How to get the most out of your tutoring session:

  • Come early in the semester. You will benefit more from tutoring if you come when you first begin having problems. 
  • Come prepared. Bring your textbook, notes, and review sheets with you. 
  • Attend classes regularly. Tutoring is designed to supplement class instruction, not to replace it.
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.


Weeks 1-2

Introduction to the course.

Initial remarks: What is Literature? 

Genres and subgenres of Italian literature. 

The history of literary Italian language

Weeks 3-4-5-6,

Monolinguismo, Plurilinguismo and Espressionismo in Italian Literature

Intertextuality and Parody.

Analysis of texts.

Week 7-8-9-10 (week 6 At home questionnaire)

La lirica e le sue forme lungo i secoli

Analysis of texts. 

Week 10 Composition II 

Week 11-12-13-14

La prosa e le sue forme lungo i secoli

Analysis of texts.

Week 13 Composition III