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Department of

Languages and Literatures

Eventi - Autunno 2014

Please use the contact information provided under each event to confirm that the event has not been cancelled or moved.


On campus

Silenced Voices, Erased Histories: African Americans and
Italian Americans on a Mississippi Delta Cotton Plantation

Wednesday., September 24 | 5:30 p.m. | Warren Auditorium (mother rosalie hill hall)

Free admission.

image of a plantation road

Contact: Loredana Di Martino | | 619- 260-2746

Mary Bucci Bush, PhD, teaches creative writing at California State, Los Angeles. She specializes in the short story and the novel. Her most recent book, Sweet Hope (Guernica 2011) tells of the unlikely alliances that develop between two families, one African American and one Italian, scrabbling to survive on a Mississippi Delta cotton plantation at the turn of the 20th century. Italians were illegally imported to the South and held in a contract labor system designed to put and keep them in debt and repress dissent among African Americans sharecroppers, who taught the Italians to work cotton, speak English, and survive. Sweet Hope was inspired by the childhood experiences of Bush’s grandmother and her family and is based on oral histories and archival research.

Sweet Hope won the 2012 Working Class Studies Association’s Tillie Olsen prize, and was a finalist for Binghamton University’s John Gardner Book Award and the 2012 Paterson Fiction Prize. Bush is also the author of a short story collection A Place of Light, winner of a PEN/Nelson Algren award. Her fiction has appeared in various literary journals and anthologies, including Growing Up Ethnic in America. She is a past recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Writer’s Fellowship and has held residencies at the Millay Colony for the Arts and Edward Albee’s “The Barn.”

Sponsored by the Italian Program and the Department of Languages and Literatures, with an award from the ESFI Interaction Fund


Finding the Mother Lode: Italian Immigrants in California
Film screening/discussion with filmmakers Gianfranco Norelli and Suma Kurien


images of Italian immigrants and the filmmakers


Wednesday., november 5 | 7 p.m. | Warren Auditorium (mother rosalie hill hall)

Free admission.

Contact: Loredana Di Martino | | 619- 260-2746

Italians first came to California in large numbers with the Gold Rush. While most found little gold, they did find a mother lode in farming, fishing, commerce and making wine.

Finding the Mother Lode documents the experience of Italian immigrants in California, which was markedly different from that of their compatriots elsewhere in the United States. Through stories set in seven Italian communities throughout California, this film examines how economic and social mobility became possible for many Italians in the Golden State. It is also a look at how immigrant identity is maintained and transformed as immigrants become assimilated into mainstream America.

The current film is a follow-up to the filmmakers’ critically acclaimed Pane Amaro (Bitter Bread) on the Italian immigration to the East Coast. Finding the Mother Lode too, is based on extensive research and weaves together oral histories by community members with scholarly analyses which provide the larger historical context.

Sponsored by the San Diego Italian Film Festival and the Department of Languages and Literatures, and supported by an ESFI grant.



Exhibit: Italian ArtPortrait of a Lady in a Green Dress - 1530 - Bartolomeo Veneto

Balboa Park: Timken Museum of Art


Time: Tues.-Sat., 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. | Sun., 1:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Cost: Free
Contact: 619 239 5548 |

The world-class Putnam Foundation Collection is on permanent display in the Timken Museum of Art. European old master paintings, Russian icons and American art constitute the primary focus of the collection.

The Putnam Collection's European paintings span nearly 600 years of Western art from early Italian altarpieces to mid-nineteenth century French landscape painting. The collection includes fine examples of French, Dutch, Flemish, and Italian painting. A featured highlight is San Diego's only painting by the great Dutch artist Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn.

The American collection is noted for its choice selection of paintings. Among its celebrated masterworks are paintings by John Singleton Copley and Eastman Johnson.

Russian icons from the Moscow and Novgorad schools, the oldest dating to the fifteenth century, are on view in a special gallery. A late bronze sculpture of Mercury by the famed sculptor Giambologna graces the center of the rotunda, which is adorned with French seventeenth century tapestries from the Stories of Queen Artemisia series.

Logo House of Italy Balboa ParkOpen House

balboa park: international cottages (Map)


Time: Sundays, 12-4 p.m.
Cost: Free

The House of Italy has the warmth of an Italian salon and is decorated with a ceiling mural, and photographs of Italian scenes. Visitors are greeted with a warm Italian welcome and treated to biscotti and gelato, Italian cookies and ice cream. Please visit and learn about Italy!




march 6, 2013: Lecture by Prof. Giacomo Rodina: "Goodbye Dolce Vita. How Italy's Economic
Miracle Has Turned Into a Quarter-century-long Economic Decline"

About the speaker: A native of Urbino, Italy, Prof. Rondina joined the Department of Economics of the University of California at San Diego in 2007, after obtaining his Ph.D. in Economics at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His research is in the field of Macroeconomics and his interests include the studying of the determinants of business cycles in industrialized economies and the analysis of global financial imbalances and their implications for recurrent financial crises. His work has been published in several journals including the American Economic Review and the Journal of Monetary Economics. He is the recipient of several grants and scholarships including funding from the National Science Foundation.

Sponsored by the ESFI Fund.


oct. 17, 2013: Lecture: Anatomy and Art in the Italian Renaissance by Kevin Petti, PhD

Italy’s medieval universities established the study of human anatomy for medical professionals. To heighten their art, Renaissance masters clandestinely studied anatomy through human dissection. An anatomy professor at San Diego Miramar College and a USD graduate, Prof. Petti studies the relationship between art and science, focusing on the work of great Italian Renaissance masters. His talk will examine the profound nexus between art and science, and the history of anatomy education in the university.

Sponsored by the Department of Languages and Literatures with a grant from the ESFI fund, and by the School of Leadership Studies.

oct. 28, 2013: Documenting the Italian Diaspora: Film screening and panel discussion with filmmakers Paul Tana and Marco Bertozzi

USD and The San Diego Italian Film Festival will show a series of documentary films about the Italian immigrant experience, including Paul Tana’s Ricordati di noi, a film dealing with the preservation of television footage that captures the life of Montreal's Italian community. The screening will be followed by a discussion with filmmakers Paul Tana and Marco Bertozzi. All films will have English subtitles.

Sponsored by the Department of Languages and Literatures with a grant from the ESFI fund, and by The San Diego Italian Film Festival (SDIFF).


oct. 30, 2013: Lecture: Italian Americans in the Media by Fulvio S. Orsitto, PhD

Prof. Fulvio Orsitto, Associate Professor and Director of the Italian and Italian American program at California State University, Chico, will give a talk about the representation of Italian Americans in the media. The first part of the talk will focus on cinema, touching upon various stylemes and stereotypes that recur in films directed by Italian Americans, but also by directors who do not belong to this community. The second part of the presentation will be centered on the depiction of Italian Americans in American TV; while the third and final part will briefly touch upon the presence of Italian Americans in American music industry.

Co-sponsored by the Department of Languages and Literatures with a grant from the ESFI fund, and by the "Intersections" Living and Learning Community (joint event for the preceptorial courses ITAL 294 and COMM 130).