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Academic Year 2013-2014

LECTURE - Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Christine Poggi, Professor of the History of Art, University of Pennsylvania

"All: Maurizio Cattelan's Infernal Comedy"

Location: 106 McCormick Hall
Time: 4:30 p.m.

In her lecture, Dr. Poggi addresses the various new meanings Cattelan’s pre-existing works take on once they are suspended from the central rotunda of the Guggenheim Museum, the uncanny role played by the various taxidermied and embalmed animals, the artist’s many self-portraits, and his obsession with guilt, failure, and death.


LECTURE - Thursday, December 5, 2013

Robin L. Thomas, Assistant Professor of Art History, Pennsylvania State University

"The Bourbon Theater of State and Architecture of Eighteenth-Century Naples"

Location: 127 East Pyne Hall
Time: 4:30 p.m.


Specializing in the architecture of Naples, Robin Thomas’s interests include early-modern urbanism; the social function of buildings, music and space; and the intellectual formation of the architect. His book, Architecture and Statecraft: Charles of Bourbon’s Naples 1734–59 (Penn State Press, 2013), examines the remaking of Naples under King Charles of Bourbon (1734–59), and addresses the political, social, economic, and cultural importance of the royal building program. Current projects include a study of slavery and building practice in Naples, the eighteenth-century redecoration of Santa Chiara in Naples, and a book-length examination of the political dimension of royal palaces in Portici and Caserta.

OPENING LECTURE - Monday, September 30, 2013

Anna Harwell Celenza, Thomas E. Caestecker Professor of Music, Georgetown University

"Jazz in Translation: Popular Music in Interwar Italy, 1917-1945"

Location: 102 Woolworth Music Center
Time: 4:30 p.m


Professor Anna Celenza explores an important aspect of global jazz history now largely forgotten: the ubiquitous influence of jazz on the cultural identity of Fascist Italy.  As a review of recently discovered archival sources reveals, under Mussolini's leadership, Italy's government tapped into the burgeoning jazz scene, captivating Northern Italy in the early 1920s and via new technologies (i.e. the radio and gramophone) transformed it into an Italian “national” jazz style distinguishable from music imported from the United States. 

At the conclusion of the lecture, please join us for a short reception to thank our speaker, and to learn more about the Program in Italian Studies as we embark on a new academic year!