New general education course will allow students to discover Italy

A new Italian course, surrounding the readings and films of Italy, will be offered next semester to all students interested in traveling to Italy or studying abroad.

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A new course is being added to the Romance Languages and Literatures Department. “Destination Italy: Readings and Films that will Inspire You to Visit Italy” will be available next semester to all students looking to discover Italy.

The three credit course aims to motivate students to visit Italy as tourists or study abroad participants. Also known as ITAL 3005.1, the course investigates the appeal of Italy to foreign visitors and the power of travel.

“The main purpose of this course is to form ‘educated’ visitors to a foreign country, who are aware of stereotypes and commonplaces, of the cultural tradition of travel to that country and, in more general terms, of the transformative power of travel,” course professor Rita Cavigioli said.

Cavigioli teaches many Italian literature and culture courses for the Department of Romance Languages and Literature. She has also written three book-length critical essays, a civilization textbook for Italian schools and several articles in the fields of age and generation studies, women’s studies, historical-pedagogical literature and foreign language methodology.

The course information is presented in a variety of ways such as lecture scripts, excerpts from guidebooks, films, novels and instructor commentaries. The film and novel titles include “Daisy Miller,” “A Room with a View,” “Roman Holiday,” “The Talented Mr. Ripley” and “La Bella Figura: A Field Guide to the Italian Mind”.

According to graduate student Paola Ampudia, who is currently getting her masters degree in romance languages, this course is a great precursor for traveling to Italy.

“I went to Italy twice,” Ampudia said. “I played two seasons of professional volleyball over there and I loved the experience. The people are really nice and the food is delicious.”

The course is completely online through Canvas. Therefore students are not expected to show up to a classroom, but they are expected to meet weekly assignment deadlines, which include homework assignments and brief research papers. “Destination Italy” meets the humanities and fine arts requirement for general education credits and the requirements for a minor in Italian area studies.

Cavigioli recommends that anyone interested in study abroad or traveling to another country should take this course.

“Italy is renowned for its spectacular artistic and natural beauty,” Cavigioli said. “The cultural, aesthetic and sensual pleasures the country offers make a visit to Italy a ‘complete’ experience.”

Edited by Alexandra Sharp | asharp@themaneater.com

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