Subversion, Liberation, and Redemption in Italian Renaissance Comedy|
Spring 2019 not offered
Avidly in search of fulfillment of body and soul, self-determination, and pleasure of all kinds, Renaissance writers explored comedy both to provoke laughter (in and out of court) and provide conceptual alternatives to reality. This course examines the historical, literary, and anthropological dimensions of comedy and the comic in an array of texts of the Italian Renaissance. We will explore the comic and its various expressions the novella, the facetia (witty anecdote), the apologue, the comic play, the mock-heroic poem, and the treatise. We will seek to understand the various functions of the comic, as a form of political subversion, as mode of social critique, as practice of erotic liberation and marginalization, as opportunity for psychological escape, as spiritual healing, and as the reconciliation of conflict. Along the way, we will investigate contextual elements such as dramatic performance, patronage, audience, and the architectural space of Renaissance theaters. The close reading of works by authors such as Niccolò Machiavelli, Ludovico Ariosto, and Giordano Bruno will allow us to probe the subversive and redeeming power of comedy to underscore continuities and ruptures between the Renaissance quest for human identity and ours. This course is conducted in Italian.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Discussion||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Prerequisites: ITAL221 OR ITAL222
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (ITST)(RMST)
P. ARETINO, La cortigiana -- any unabridged edition
L. ARIOSTO, La lena -- any unabridged edition
G. BRUNO, Il candelaio -- any unabridged edition
N. MACHIAVELLI, La mandragola -- any unabridged edition
Course Reader (provided in pdf)
|Examination and Assignments: |
Oral presentation, quizzes, discussion questions, written assignments of varied lengths, including book review, critical essay. This is a discussion-based class and students' active participation is expected, encouraged, and supported.
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
THIS COURSE IS INTENDED PRIMARILY FOR THE FOLLOWING STUDENTS: those who have a) completed the 221-222 sequence; b) who have studied in Italy (for one or two semesters); c) whose experience with Italian is very recent (e.g., studied in Italy during the Fall). This course may be suitable for students who have not completed a course at the 221-222 level but whose placement exam suggested they should take courses numbered above 221. In the event that a student with advanced reading, writing, and speaking abilities in Italian has not yet completed a course at the 221-222 level, s/he will be asked to conduct a brief oral interview with the professor during registration or drop/add. In the event that the student does not meet the prerequisites AND the professor has any doubts as to placement, he will ask the student to engage in a brief oral interview.