Italian

Director of undergraduate studies: Simona Lorenzini, 82–90 Wall St., 432-0508; Language Program Director: Anna Iacovella, 82–90 Wall St., 432-8299; italian.yale.edu

The major in Italian explores Italy’s vital role in the formation of Western thought and culture. The core language courses provide students with the opportunity to acquire an in-depth linguistic proficiency, together with a solid literary and historical background in the language. In its interdisciplinary focus, the major offers a variety of advanced courses in literature, cinema, history, translation practice, art, and gender studies. Central to the major is the conviction that delving into another language and culture, in addition to the intellectual enrichment it affords, raises students’ awareness of what is distinctive about their own cultural identity.   

Italian makes an excellent double major as a complement to several extradepartmental disciplines, among them History of Art, Comparative Literature, Economics, Film and Media Studies, History, Political Science, and Architecture.

Studying and appreciating a foreign language, literature, and culture offer students a useful and challenging option in their university education. In particular, the Italian major prepares for careers in international business, translation, journalism, economics, art, media, film, fashion, design, education, and tourism.

Prerequisite 

Candidates for the major should have completed a course in Italian at the level of ITAL 130 (L3) or should have received credit for equivalent work by the end of their sophomore year. Exceptions may be made in the case of outstanding students who have not satisfied this requirement.

Placement Procedures

All students who have not taken Italian at Yale are expected to take the departmental placement test, except for students who have no previous knowledge of Italian. The placement examination is completed online during the summer; see the Calendar for the Opening Days of College and the department website for details.

Requirements of the Major 

The major consists of eleven term courses beyond the prerequisite. Eight term courses in the Italian department numbered 140 or above (including graduate courses) are required, at least five of which must be conducted in Italian. The courses in the department must include either ITAL 150 or 151, a survey course on Italian literature (ITAL 162 or 172), and a course on Dante's Divine Comedy (ITAL 310 or equivalent), as well as three courses covering different periods in Italian studies: one in the Middle Ages (in addition to the course on Dante’s Comedy), one in the Renaissance, and one in modern Italian literature and media. The aim of these six foundational courses is to provide students with both a broad acquaintance with the major works of Italian studies and a more detailed knowledge of specific periods in Italian literature and media. No more than three Italian department courses taught in English may count toward the major. Students intending to major in Italian should consult the director of undergraduate studies (DUS).

In completing their programs, students are required to elect two courses in other languages and literatures, history of art, history, linguistics, philosophy, and media that are related to their field of study and approved by the DUS. Any graduate course in another national literature or in linguistics may be substituted for one of these two courses.

Senior Requirement 

During their senior year, all students majoring in Italian are required to meet with the DUS at least twice per month. In the Fall or Spring of the senior year, all majors must present a departmental essay written in Italian and completed under the direction of a faculty adviser in ITAL 491. The essay should demonstrate careful reading and research on a topic approved by the adviser in consultation with the DUS. A recommended length for the essay is thirty pages, plus bibliography. The student and the advisor will select and invite a second faculty reader, who will receive the final version of the thesis by the established deadline. While prospectus and draft deadlines are determined by the adviser, the student must submit the final version no later than 10 days before the last day of classes, in the Fall or Spring. The senior requirement culminates in a conversation with department faculty to discuss the thesis and the student's overall experience of study in the major.

Advising

The department's course offerings vary greatly from year to year. Students interested in planning coursework in Italian that extends beyond the current academic year should consult the DUS.

Related majors In addition to the major in Italian literature, the department supports the applications of qualified students who wish to pursue a course in Italian studies under the provisions of a Special Divisional Major. Majors can devise a broad program in social, political, economic, or intellectual history as related to and reflected in Italian literature, or pursue special interests in architecture, film, art, philosophy, music, history, linguistics, theater, political theory, or other fields especially well-suited for examination from the perspective of Italian cultural history. Majors in Italian studies must design their programs in close consultation with the DUS and seek the guidance of an additional member of the department whose interests closely coincide with the proposed program of study. For further information, see Special Divisional Majors.

Combined B.A./M.A. degree program Exceptionally able and well-prepared students may complete a course of study leading to the simultaneous award of the B.A. and M.A. degrees after eight terms of enrollment. See Academic Regulations, Arrangements, “Simultaneous Award of the Bachelor’s and Master's Degrees.” Interested students should consult the DUS prior to the sixth term of enrollment for specific requirements in Italian.

Study Abroad

For information about the Year or Term Abroad program, see Academic Regulations, section K, Special Arrangements, “Year or Term Abroad.”

REQUIREMENTS OF THE MAJOR

Prerequisite ITAL 130 or equivalent

Number of courses 11 term courses beyond prereq (incl senior req)

Specific courses requiredITAL 150 or 151; ITAL 162 or 172; ITAL 310 or equivalent

Distribution of courses 8 term courses in Italian dept numbered 140 or above, incl 1 in Middle Ages (in addition to ITAL 310), 1 in Renaissance, and 1 in Italian media, at least 5 of these conducted in Italian; 2 courses in other langs or lits, hist of art, hist, or phil approved by DUS

Substitution permitted Any grad course in another national lit or in linguistics for 1 of the 2 courses in other depts, with DUS permission

Senior requirement Senior essay in Italian (ITAL 491) and a conversation with departmental faculty members at the end of the final semester.

The major in Italian explores Italy’s vital role in the formation of Western thought and culture.  The core language courses provide students with the opportunity to acquire an in-depth linguistic proficiency, together with a solid literary and historical background in the language. In its interdisciplinary focus, the major offers a variety of advanced courses in literature, cinema, history, translation practice, art, and gender studies. Central to the major is the conviction that delving into another language and culture, in addition to the intellectual enrichment it affords, raises students’ awareness of what is distinctive about their own cultural identity.   

Italian makes an excellent double major as a complement to a few extra-departmental disciplines, among them History of Art, Comparative Literature, Economics, Film & Media Studies, History, Political Science, International Relations, European Studies, Architecture.

Studying and appreciating a foreign language, literature, and culture offer Yale students a useful and challenging option in their university education. In particular, the Italian major prepares for careers in international business, translation, journalism, economics, art, media, film, fashion, design, education, and tourism.

Placement

The placement examination in Italian will be offered online prior to the start of the fall term. Students who have studied Italian in high school, taken the AP Italian test, or completed course work in Italy are advised to take the placement test. Details will be published on the department website and on the Center for Language Study website.

The core courses are:

Candidates for the major must complete a course in Italian at the level of ITAL 130 (L3) or receive credit for equivalent work by the end of their sophomore year.

Combined B.A./M.A. Program in Italian

Yale College allows Italian majors to complete the Italian B.A. and M.A. degrees simultaneously in four years, provided the student meets certain requirements. Admission to the program is limited, and students should apply through the director of undergraduate studies (DUS) no later than the last day of classes in their fifth term of enrollment in Yale College.

Certificate of Advanced Language Study

The Italian Department offers a Certificate of Advanced Language Study in Italian. A certificate adviser, typically the director of undergraduate studies (DUS), advises students on the certification process and certifies to the University Registrar's Office that students have completed the stated requirements before the end of eight terms of study. The Certificate of Advanced Language Study is listed on student official transcripts. 

Requirements

Students seeking to earn the certificate are required to take four courses beyond the L4 level in their chosen language, at least three of which must be Yale courses designated as L5. All courses must be taken for a letter grade, and students must achieve a grade of B or above. With the approval of the certificate adviser, one advanced non-L5 course, conducted in the target language, such as an independent study course, a graduate seminar, or an advanced seminar may count toward certification requirements.

The certificate adviser may allow one “language across the curriculum” (LxC) course, which ordinarily is an advanced seminar with an additional weekly discussion section in the target language, to count toward the certification requirements. The adviser may also approve the substitution of up to two credits earned during study abroad and taught in the target language to count toward the certificate requirements. If the adviser approves courses taken outside of Yale for inclusion in the certificate requirements, students must take the necessary steps to ensure those courses appear on their transcript.

Credit/D/Fail No courses taken Credit/D/Fail may be counted toward the requirements of the certificate.

FACULTY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF ITALIAN

Professors Millicent Marcus, Giuseppe Mazzotta, Jane Tylus (Chair)

Assistant Professor Christiana Purdy Moudarres

Senior Lectors Michael Farina, Anna Iacovella

Lector Simona Lorenzini

Postdoctoral Associate Serena Bassi

Affiliated Faculty Paola Bertucci, (History of Science, Medicine, and Public Health), Howard Bloch (French), Jessica Brantley (English), Francesco Casetti (Film and Media Studies), Virginia Jewiss (Humanities), Jacqueline Jung (History of Art), Laurence Kanter (Yale University Art Gallery), Gundula Kreuzer (Music), Jessica Pertiz (Music), David Quint (English and Comparative Literature), Ayesha Ramachandran (Comparative Literature), Ellen Rosand (Music), Pierre Saint-Amand (French), Christophe Schuwey, (French), Gary Tomlinson (Music)