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Welcome to the Center for Italian Studies
The Center for Italian Studies assists Italian Studies students and others by offering access to a variety of resources. In addition, it fosters the study of Italian language and culture in an interdisciplinary perspective by sponsoring events like lectures, readings by Italian authors, and international conferences across and beyond the traditional spectrum of Italian Studies. Finally, it collaborates closely with the Italian Embassy in Washington DC, The Consulate General of Italy in Philadelphia, The Italian Cultural Institute in New York and Washington to promote the opening of the discussion of Italianness to include Italicity.
The Center for Italian Studies at the University of Pennsylvania was created in 1978 by President Martin Meyerson and School of Arts and Sciences’ Dean Vartan Gregorian with the endorsement of the Republic of Italy. It has the distinction of being the first such center in the United States. Professor Jerre Mangione (English) was named initially as its honorary director. Since then, the directorship has been filled on a rotating basis by other distinguished members of the faculty from the Departments of Romance Languages, History, History of Art, Classical Studies, and English.