News Archive

29 August 2016

A dear friend has left us. This is our message to her.

Cara Biancamaria,

ci mancherà' di te qualcosa di prezioso e raro. La grazia con cui ti avvicinavi alle persone. La grazia che ti guidava nel tuo viaggio attraverso il mondo delle cose e delle idee. Chi ti ha conosciuto l'ha avvertita come una verità' impalpabile ma fortissima. La grazia del vivere, dell'apprendere, dell'agire e' l'eredità più preziosa che di te ci resta.

3 June 2016

The first interactive map of the places of Dante's Commedia has been created by Andrea Gazzoni as part of a project funded by the Price Lab for Digital Humanities at the University of Pennsylvania. A set of layers allows users to explore the map according to different parameters, with  pop-up cards describing each mention of a place and quoting Dante’s text. Find more information and visit it at

3 June 2016

Eva Del Soldato’s project "Ancient Masks, Modern Ideas: Plato and Aristotle in the Early Modern Age" has received a Trustees’ Council of Penn Women (TCPW) faculty research fellowship, awarded by the Alice Paul Center. Professor Del Soldato will use this prestigious award to work in European and American libraries and archives and she will present her research at the Alice Paul Center in 2017. 

11 April 2016

Check out the Research page of the Italian Studies website. You will find event podcasts, news on current research in Italian Studies at Penn, and materials that you may find useful for your own research or in your teaching.

4 April 2016

Andrea Gazzoni has received a Penfield Dissertation Research Fellowship for the 2016-2017 academic year. Andrea is writing his dissertation on "Trasformazioni dell'epica in Dante, Boccaccio e Petrarca". Congratulations!

31 March 2016

Graduate student Vanessa Di Maggio has been admitted to the prestigious 2016 Mellon Summer Institute in Italian Paleography at the Newberry Library. Vanessa will receive intensive training in the accurate reading of handwritten medieval and early modern Italian vernacular texts to apply to her studies of Dante and his contemporaries. Congratulations!

29 March 2016

Marco Lepore has been awarded a SAS Dissertation Completion Fellowship for the 2016-2017 academic year. The award recognizes his outstanding academic record and his impressive plan for dissertation research. Marco is working on the writings and editorial work of Italian author Roberto Bazlen (1902–1965). Congratulations!

24 March 2016

Undergraduate Scott Altman is the winner of the Order of the Sons of Italy in America's Columbus Forum 2016 Dr. Marcase Scholarship. He will receive the award at a ceremony March 31st. Congratulations Scott!

21 March 2016

Prof. Fabio Finotti's new book, Italia. L'invenzione della patria (Bompiani 2016), is fresh off the press! The book traces the history of the idea of "homeland" in Italy as an extraordinary "cultural invention" that evolved along the centuries from Virgil's notion of it as something to be built (rather than naturally existing), through different imperial, romantic, and fascist incarnations, to the nostalgia of expats in Little Italies

17 February 2016

Andrea Gazzoni has been named Dean's Scholar 2016. Andrea is a fourth year graduate student and is writing his doctoral dissertation on epic as a genre in Dante, Petrarca, and Boccaccio. Congratulations!

11 January 2016

The preparatory course for the upcoming CILS - Certificate of Italian as Foreign Language exam of June 9, 2016, is in session.

15 September 2015

Last July, Mauro Calcagno, Associate Professor of Music and Italian Studies, led the workshop “La parole chantée de Venise à Paris” at the Centre de musique baroque de Versailles, in collaboration with Guillaume Bernardi (York Univ.), and Barbara Nestola (Versailles). The workshop was part of the ongoing project "The Sung Word between Venice and Paris" which included the international conference on Italian librettos The Power of Affections held in November 2014 at the University of Pennsylvania's Kislak Center.

17 August 2015

Helen McFie is pure gold! Besides being a phenomenal Italian instructor and codirector of the Italian Language Program, Helen McFie is a champion rower reaping gold medals the way she reaps golden student evaluations. Her most recent feat is 5x5 (that's 5 gold for 5 races!) representing Vesper Boat Club at the USRowing Masters National Championship, 13-16 August 2015. Congratulazioni!

24 March 2015

ISSNAF and laFondazioneNY are pleased to announce the 2015 Award for the Humanities. The competition is open to all Italian researchers born after April 1970 and working primarily in the USA and Canada in the field of Cinema Studies and the Performing Arts. Please read on for all information.

18 March 2015

Marco Lepore is the recipient of the 2015-2016 Penfield Fellowship awarded to students in “diplomacy, international affairs, and belles-lettres” whose research requires travel abroad. Marco received the fellowship to complete his dissertation research on Italian writer and critic Roberto Bazlen. Congratulations!

11 March 2015

After a very successful collaboration in Fall 2014 on the wonderful conference The Power of Affections, November 13-14, the Center for Italian Studies and the Penn Music Department continue to work on common projects. Mauro Calcagno, Giuseppe Gerbino of Columbia University, and Laurent Pugin of the Répertoire International des Sources Musicales – Switzerland, presented the Marenzio Project, or MODE (Marenzio Online Digital Edition), February 25. 

9 January 2015

The Center for Italian Studies and the Music Department announce a series of informal lecture/discussions on opera organized by Mauro Calcagno (Associate Professor of Music History and Italian Studies) and Lily Kass (Ph.D. candidate in Music History).

16 December 2014

The Fall 2014 semester is drawing to a close and taking the year with it. As we get ready for 2015, we'd like to invite you to follow us also in the coming spring semester. We keep collaborating with institutions and foundations across the globe and working to grow our network of Italians and Italics so that we may keep promoting Italian culture with great events open to the Penn and to the Philadelphia community at large, and reaching far beyond. You can find a record of our past activities on our Facebook page, Join us! 

24 November 2014

If you think you may be interested in pursuing a career in education, and specifically in teaching English as a foreign language around the globe or teaching Italian in the US. Italian Studies and GSE have a deal for you! Read on.

26 September 2014

Among the many resources that make life at Penn richer and more interesting, the French Italian Graduate Society is a student-run organization that represents graduate students in French and Italian. FIGS plans monthly meetings on topics of shared professional and academic interest, and organizes the annual FIGS Conference. Would you like to join them? Keep informed of their activities? Click here for contacts. And don't miss the upcoming conference, March 21