Lecturer of Italian Language and Literature
Department of Italian Language and Literature
Junior Year Abroad-Florence Director 2011/2012
I joined the Italian Department at Smith College in 2007, after spending a few years teaching both in the UK and in the US.
At Smith I found a perfect balance between my teaching and research interests in that I have had the opportunity to teach a variety of different courses: language from beginner level to advanced conversation, introduction to Italian culture, Italian literature and social history.
My teaching experience at Smith College has made me discover and appreciate the role of an academic curriculum built around students, which recognizes the importance of a serious period of residence abroad as the culmination of a long-term program of study. I believe that our Junior Year Abroad in Florence representes an unparalleled opportunity for our students and I am honored to have been chosen as its direcor for the 2011/2012 academic year.
My current research project explores the synergy between medievalism and national identity in historical novels published during the Italian Risorgimento. I analyze how minor authors of the early 19th century were able to promote an emotional adhesion to an idealized national community. This had very frank nationalistic implications and it helped construct an Italian identity based on heroism, self-abnegation, devotion to one’s country and cultural tradition. Such research also constitues the basis for my senior seminar (usually offered in the fall semester) "Creation of Italian National Identity".
At Smith, I am also acting as the faculty liason for our Smith College Italian Club, promoting the development of our students' extracurricular activities and supervising the organization of the Club's calendar of events.