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Course Descriptions

Italian (ITAL)

To view the complete schedule of courses for
each semester, go to Cardinal Station.

ITAL 101: Elementary Italian I

4.00 Credits

Designed for students with little or no prior experience with Italian. Introduction to the basic principles of language necessary for written and oral communication. Students use fundamental principles of vocabulary and grammar structures to talk about daily life and gain insights into aspects of Italian culture through simple readings and Internet activities. Class meets four days per week. Students who took the language in high school for more than one year MUST take the language placement test before registering for this or any other language course in order to receive proper credit. Undergraduate Language courses 101-113 are subject to an Instructional Fee at the time of registration. For current Tuition and Fees visit http://enrollmentservices.cua.edu/Student-Financial-Information/Costs.cfm.

ITAL 101M: Elementary Italian I

4.00 Credits

Undergraduate Language courses 101-113 are subject to an Instructional Fee at the time of registration. For current Tuition and Fees visit http://enrollmentservices.cua.edu/Student-Financial-Information/Costs.cfm.

ITAL 102: Elementary Italian II

4.00 Credits

This is a dynamic language course that emphasizes communication, enabling students to interact in Italian at an elementary level. Students use fundamental principles of vocabulary and grammar structures to talk about daily life and gain insights into aspects of Italian culture through simple readings of authentic materials, movie-based activities, and every-day conversation with their native speaker instructors. Classes meet four days per week. Prerequisite: C' or better in Italian 101, appropriate placement score or equivalent. Undergraduate Language courses 101-113 are subject to an Instructional Fee at the time of registration. For current Tuition and Fees visit http://enrollmentservices.cua.edu/Student-Financial-Information/Costs.cfm.

ITAL 102M: Elementary Italian I

4.00 Credits

no description available

ITAL 103: Intermediate Italian I

3.00 Credits

Students build on what they have learned during the first two semesters of Italian. They improve their communication skills by discussing and writing about various topics drawn from readings and film focused on Italian culture. This course includes review and expansion of grammar and vocabulary. Class meets three times per week. Prerequisite: C' or better in Italian 102, appropriate placement score or equivalent. Undergraduate Language courses 101-113 are subject to an Instructional Fee at the time of registration. For current Tuition and Fees visit http://enrollmentservices.cua.edu/Student-Financial-Information/Costs.cfm.

ITAL 104: Intermediate Italian II

3.00 Credits

Italian 104 is a communicative language course aimed to develop oral and written proficiency at the Intermediate level. Students achieve cross-cultural understanding by reading and discussing a wide selection of texts and multimedia materials. Grammar review and vocabulary expansion are also provided to promote progress in the four area skills of Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing. Prerequisite: C- or better in Italian 103, appropriate placement score or equivalent. Undergraduate Language courses 101-113 are subject to an Instructional Fee at the time of registration. For current Tuition and Fees visit http://enrollmentservices.cua.edu/Student-Financial-Information/Costs.cfm.

ITAL 120: Surfing Venice and its Splendors

1.00 Credits

In this course, students will explore and study Venice's rich history and culture. Amongst the many beauties of the city, they will visit the byzantine basilica of Saint Mark, Santa Maria di Frari, the Ghetto, the Ducal Palace and understand the delicate equilibrium between modernity and tradition of what is perhaps one of the most unique urban spaces in the world. There will be visits to several museums and monuments. Students will conduct a small research project in the city, and prepare and lead the tour of one of the historical sites for the entire group.

ITAL 130: Introduction to Italian Culture and Language

3.00 Credits

Introduction to Italian Culture and Language Italy is famous for its many contributions to the world we know today. Its art, architecture, fashion, music, literature, and film are a few of the most widely recognized. This class will overview Italian culture and history by exploring 5 key cities: Rome, Florence, Venice, Milan and Naples. Along the way, students will also get an introduction to basic Italian language in such contexts as greetings, ordering in a café and restaurant, and shopping. Primarily taught in English with basic language instruction in Italian. Fills CUA Humanities requirement.

ITAL 201: Italian Advanced Conversation I

3.00 Credits

This is an advanced course for students who have reached linguistic competence to the point of comprehending and producing complex texts on topics familiar to them, both/either technical or scientific. The goal of this course is for students to understand a wide range of oral complex texts, television and radio programs, films and also written ones (correspondence, articles, literary works). Prerequisite: C- or better in Italian 104, appropriate placement score or equivalent. Offered only in Rome. It satisfies Italian Studies Minor requirements.

ITAL 202: Italian Advanced Conversation II

3.00 Credits

A continuation of 201. Prerequisite: C- or better in Italian 104, appropriate placement score or equivalent. Offered only in Rome. It satisfies Italian Studies Minor requirements.

ITAL 203: Advanced Italian I: Talking About Culture

3.00 Credits

This course emphasizes the development of conversational skills, vocabulary expansion, while deepening students' knowledge of current Italian literary, social, and cultural events through the study of Marco Tullio Giordana's 2002 film The Best of Youth. It also develops effective written skills in various contexts and prepares them for written assignments in upper division Italian courses. From a cultural standpoint, students will concentrate on pivotal Italian historic events occurred in the last thirty years which they will follow as the screening of Giordana's movie progresses. Newspapers and magazines will also be part of the material. [Prerequisite: C- or better in Italian 104, appropriate placement score or equivalent.] Students will read/see these narratives with a pertinent critical approach, focusing on techniques and strategies, such as narration and summary of a story.

ITAL 204: Advanced Italian II: Talking About Culture

3.00 Credits

An ideal follow-up of Italian 203 (but the sequence can be inverted), Italian 204 is designed to further develop language skills through discussions of texts, films (The Best of Youth but not exclusively), and contemporary events, debates, writing workshops, and grammar review, while introducing a more complex syntax, both in conversation and writing.

ITAL 210: Italian Women Writers

3.00 Credits

The evolution of 20th Century Italian culture, literature, and the novel genre are examined through the works of major female writers. This semester the course will focus on Roman writer Elsa Morante. The program of Italian Studies at CUA celebrates the hundredth anniversary of Morante's birth in 2012 by organizing an international conference which is directly connected to this course. Students will read and analyze Morante novels and poems as the films inspired by her works. Students will benefit from the three-day conference held at the end of October in collaboration with the Italian Embassy and the Italian Cultural Institute where they will meet and talk with world-leading scholars. This conference is generously sponsored by the Davy Carozza family fund. Taught in English. Satisfies literature and humanities requirements.

ITAL 211: French and Italian Women Writers

3.00 Credits

This women's studies course focuses on the genre of the novel as seen through the work of key French and Italian women writers. At the core of the novels studied are the themes of relationships and a sense of history, real and imaginary. Works by Colette, Simone de Beauvoir, Marguerite Duras, Julia Kristeva, Anna Banti, Annamaria Ortese, Elsa Morante, and Dacia Maraini will be studied chronologically according to the use of narrative techniques and the construction of Self. A comparative analysis will reveal how gender and class cut across women's definition of themselves and their personal and public lives, influencing their literary texts. Taught in English. Enrollment in an additional one-credit discussion section, ITAL 311D: French & Italian Women Writers Discussion, is mandatory for those with a French major or minor or an Italian Studies minor.

ITAL 211D: French and Italian Women Writers Discussion

1.00 Credits

This is a one-credit discussion; mandatory for those with a French major or minor or an Italian Studies minor and must be taken in conjunction with either French 311 or Italian 311.

ITAL 220: The Splendor of Rome in Literature & Film

3.00 Credits

Famous twins Romulus and Remus did not know perhaps how important the city they were designing on the hills surrounding the Tiber River was going to be in world history! These two brothers, however important, were merely the first two artists who shaped one of the most beautiful, complex, and recounted cities in the world: Rome! Rome, or the Eternal City, as it is often referred to, incorporates millennia of history of Italian culture. It is the physical embodiment of a complex identity such as the Italian. It is the point of reference for many travelers who have journeyed there like British poets Shelley, Keats, and American writers like James and Williams. Indeed, since the birth of this spectacular city in 753 b.c. Italian and foreign writers have relentlessly tried to shape the beauty and the historical import of Rome in poetry, in music, in the visual arts, and cinema. During this virtual walk through Rome's (particularly modern) history, students will encounter works revealing the singular allure of the space of the city that is twice a capital. As history proceeds, transformations in society and in aesthetic visualizations take place. From the work of world-renown directors Federico Fellini and Vittorio De Sica to that of writers Alberto Moravia and Amara Lakhous, students will enjoy and appreciate great examples of fiction. Taught in English. Satisfies humanities and literature requirement.

ITAL 221: Mapping Italy Mapping Rome

3.00 Credits

This course is taught in Washington for one week and in Rome, Italy, for three weeks. It addresses the issue of the cultural palimpsest characterizing the history of the Italian Peninsula, and more specifically the city of Rome. During the first week, students will study rudiments of Italian language to enable them to do simple activities once in Rome. They will also study the geography of the country as a brief introduction to its history. Once in Rome, students will dissect the strata of the Eternal City as a way to discover different periods and their historical references in literary fiction set against its backdrop. They will examine public spaces designed according to academic criteria versus originality, creativity, and exuberance as leading factors in the creation of artistic works. During the fourth week, students will appreciate the global and multicultural aspect of the city. Two travels are planned, one to Florence and the other to Venice.

ITAL 222: Literature and the City

3.00 Credits

We will explore how the relationship between man and the city has changed since the advent of industrialization, and find out how men and women in the 20th century related to the Modern City. The recent rise of ecocriticism suggests a growing interest in the urban environment and its relationship to literature. We will watch as the city ceases to be just a backdrop to literary works and becomes protagonist. From Futurism to Neorealism, from Magic Realism to Postmodernism, sources for this course range from fiction to poetry to the first Italian graphic novel and span over the course of the 20th century to the present day (D'Annunzio, Marinetti, Bontempelli, Merini, Buzzati, Calvino and others). In English with translated texts. This course may be used to fulfill the CUA Humanities and Literature requirements and the Italian Studies Minor requirements.

ITAL 226: Fascism, Racism, and War in Italian Literature

3.00 Credits

This course offers an analysis of the complex legacy of Risorgimento in the 20th century Italian nation. Immediate prospects of prosperity for the young country had to face, in fact, the reality of fascism, the rise of the figure of dictator Benito Mussolini to a public myth, racism, two wars and the period called Resistenza. By braiding the reality of historical facts and the reality of artistic artifacts, namely history and literature, students learn and examine representations of some of the most complex events leading up to the republic of 1946 and a new Constitution. Mussolini's political speeches will be analyzed and measured against the background of a young country still in dire need of a political compass, not entirely devoid, however, of the intellectual ability to reject totalitarianism as philosopher Benedetto Croce did throughout his career. Racism and resistance to the regime as evidenced by the novels by Italo Calvino and Beppe Fenoglio will constitute some of the enlightening readings of the semester along with Primo Levi's reflections on his experience in the Auschwitz Lager in If This is a Man. Taught in English. Satisfies requirements for humanities, and literature.

ITAL 227: The Contemporary Italian Novel

3.00 Credits

There is no other genre more comprehensive and interesting than the novel! Italian culture and society come together when reading Italian literary narrative. In this course, students will read novels published in the last twenty years from Italo Calvino onward in order to analyze the effects of the Italian novel tradition and the impact of postmodernism on recent output. Students will be encouraged to analyze the social context of the fiction studied, relating it to developments in Italian society in the postwar and more contemporary period. Students taking this subject will learn to apply contemporary literary theory of specific texts; to evaluate the importance of specific Italian elements in the novels studied and to be able to discuss novels.

ITAL 230: Social Issues in Italian Cinema

3.00 Credits

Social issues have a stronger impact when presented visually. Since Neorealism, Italian directors and scriptwriters have consistently shown a deep interest in their country's socio-political complexities while making spectators aware of possible different readings of reality cinema can always propose vis-à-vis manipulated news. From Sicily-ridden Mafia to political corruption, engaged filmmakers thus fearlessly engage with social inequities, scandals, and unjust deaths. Their tool is the careful construction of narratives of resistance. Students will see and analyze films from the postwar period to the current day. Through films like Divorce Italian-Style and Gomorrah, students gain an understanding of how movies centered on social issues can be at once entertaining and thought provoking. While this course focuses on the way Italian filmmakers deal with the visual representation of social issues, students might apply the learned skills to better grasp also cinematic representations of their own social reality. Taught in English. Satisfies requirements for Humanities. Same as MDIA 308.

ITAL 231: New Italian Cinema 1980-2005

3.00 Credits

Cinema is perhaps one of the most important elements that connote and make Italian culture so famous around the world. From La Dolce Vita to La Vita e Bella, Italian films speak to different crowds in different ways. The overall image is one of a country whose citizens are fraught by problems and existential issues that bears always that life must be lived at its fullest, no matter the historical period. At the core of this course lies the study of the techniques and the themes contemporary Italian directors employ in their distinctive engagement to treat and depict the mishaps of an expansive lack of (Italian) identity, massive immigration, unemployment, precarious work, and expanded or dysfunctional families. Taught in English. Satisfies requirements for humanities.

ITAL 233: The Myth of Childhood in Italian Cinema

3.00 Credits

The goal of this course is to familiarize students with the important theme of childhood in Italian Cinema. In fact, this topic is very frequented by Italian film makers, as the child's point of view is present in many trends and periods of Italian cinema which often utilizes literary texts as its point of departure to develop new perspectives on childhood and Italian society in its transformations. In this course, students will be offered a unique chance of analyzing the theme of childhood in mainly two periods of Italian cinema. One, the famous period dubbed as Neo-realism, will make up the first part of the semester. We will analyze films by Vittorio De Sica, Luchino Visconti, and Roberto Rossellini. Films from postmodern cinema will constitute the second and final part of the semester. In this part of the course, we will screen films by Gianni Amelio, Oscar winner Gabriele Salvatores, and Cristina Comencini. The idea behind this division is to compare and contrast these two very different cinematic expressions which originate from different periods of Italian society and its history. The result I hope to reach is a fruitful semester after which students will be familiar and comfortable with Italian film reading and related cinematic techniques, with the desire to further pursue studies in both. Taught in English. Satisfies requirements for humanities.

ITAL 240: Italy and the Renaissance

3.00 Credits

Italian Renaissance has consistently been a fascinating topic of study throughout the centuries. In this course, students will engage with texts highly representative of the culture of Renaissance, a period in which scholars stressed the importance of the liberty of the human spirit to form new models for the advancement of humankind in the arts, ethics, politics, and science (just to name some fields that thrived during this period). From humanist Petrarch to Boccaccio, from architect Alberti to Leonardo da Vinci, from political theorist Machiavelli to Campanella, important narratives of history, art, and literature will be analyzed to fully appreciate the cultural legacy of Italian Renaissance. Students will be encouraged to pursue their specific interests within the context of the course. Course taught in English. It satisfies humanities and literature requirements.

ITAL 250: The Italian American Experience; A Survey

3.00 Credits

In a country of immigrants such as the United States of America, each ethnic component reveals distinct features that construct their identity. Italian migration in the United States is studied from a historical, cultural, and literary standpoint that underscores the importance of the Italian contribution to the making of the country. The process of identity building, the condition of immigrants and the energy drawn from a new economic situation of mobility, have led Italian American artists like Pietro DiDonato and Martin Scorsese to wonderful works of fiction and poetry, film and visual arts. After a historical introduction, Italian American culture will be analyzed in films, TV series, and literature. It fulfills literature and humanities requirements. Cross-listed with MDIA. Taught in English.

ITAL 260: Dangerous Beauty: Venice and its Treasures

3.00 Credits

If Marco Polo constitutes the symbol of Venetians' renowned interest for traveling and commerce, many foreign artists felt intrigued and bewitched by the mysterious beauty of his hometown, Venice. As it stands, Venice is not merely an `Italian city, but a masterpiece that gave inspiration to many. In this course, we will enter the mesmerizing world of the city called La Serenissima (most serene), the most ancient Italian Republic and take delight in the treasures of its `dangerous beauty,' while listening to Antonio Vivaldi's Four Seasons and admiring Andrea Palladio's magnificent architecture. Venice is also home to one of the most acclaimed film and arts festivals in the world -the Biennale of the Arts- and we will devote attention also to this aspect of the city. There will be six movie screenings for Fall: Taught in English. Satisfies literature and humanities requirements

ITAL 303: Italy and Musical Tradition

3.00 Credits

Many of the most important musical genres originated in Italy: the sonata da chiesa and sonata da camera, which gave birth to chamber music; the concerto grosso, progenitor of the modern concerto; the cantata, and the oratorio. Opera began in Italy (Florence) around 1600, and Italian preeminence in the operatic field persists to the present day, both in the richness of its repertory and the quality of its performers. The course will consider such topics as the influence of the Counter-Reformation on Mass settings, the nature of the concerto grosso, the stylistic distinctions between sacred and secular music, the importance of melody and drama in Italian stage music, and other topics. Also, the course will introduce students to important, standard musical terminology. Chronologically organized, course topics will be anchored by focusing on a specific composer or work: the development of musical trends and genres is an important aspect of study. Open to all CUA students: music reading or Italian language reading ability is not required.

ITAL 489: Research Seminar

3.00 Credits

no description available

ITAL 494: Independent Study

3.00 Credits

no description available

ITAL 500: Reading for Comprehension

0.00 Credits

The fundamentals of the language and rapid reading experience. Passing this course fulfills the graduate language requirement. Additional preparation may be needed for advanced requirements in some schools and programs. Cost equivalent to that of a three-credit course.

ITAL 521: Private Voices, Public Spaces

3.00 Credits

no description available