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Welcome to ACIS, the Australasian Centre for Italian Studies – a connection-point for the specialised communities of Italianist scholars in Australasia and beyond.

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Australia past and future in Italian: Melbourne 9 May 2015 @ 2pm

La MamaPresented for the first time in Italian translation at La Mama Theatre (205 Faraday Street, Carlton) on Saturday 9 May at 2pm, Australia Past & Future is a reading of two plays by Australian playwright David Mence, translated into Italian by Angela Tarantini (Monash University) and directed by Laurence Strangio. Convincing Ground (Il Baleniere) is set in Western Victoria in 1838. William Dutton staggers around in his old whaler’s hut, drunk and in a world of his own. Each night he is visited by his long-dead Aboriginal wife, Renangh. He cannot tell if she is a ghost or a figment of his imagination, and in his dilapidated condition, he no longer cares. But tonight is different. He senses the end is nigh, and before he dies, he must speak the truth about the night they last saw each other—the night the Convincing Ground got its name. The Gully (La Gola) imagines Australia in 2109. Catastrophic environmental collapse has rendered the continent a parched wasteland. Marauding bands of ‘crows’ roam the wastes making life nasty, brutish and short. Yet in an old stone hut hidden in a ravine three men eke out an existence. They have stumbled onto a miracle: a freshwater creek. It is a secret that they will kill to preserve. To book seats, call La Mama (03 93476142) or book online HERE.

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Diario etnografico Expo 2015 – Note dal Campo del 15/04/2015

Edda Orlandi   Università degli Studi di Milano

Ecco, lo sapevo che ne avrei combinata un’altra delle mie! Accidenti, ho fatto un altro errore proprio da etnografa pivella. Con tutte quelle domande sull’Expo sono stata scambiata per un’emissaria dei potenti Grandi Capi locali, forse persino per una spia dell’Amministrazione coloniale. Eh sì che tutti i manuali di metodologia mettono doverosamente in guardia l’aspirante apprendista etnografo: sempre chiarire che non si lavora a favore e per conto del Potere, ma solo e soltanto per Sete di Conoscenza. thumb_arancia

Ecco il perché di tutta quella reticenza tra i nativi?! Ad ogni modo ora mi sto dando un gran daffare per correggere questa falsa impressione sul mio conto, non sottraendomi quando necessario dal partecipare alla condivisione delle maldicenze sul Festival e sul suo sicuro fallimento (sempre, naturalmente, con la dovuta discrezione, come saggiamente raccomandava il Prof. del corso di “Ethnographic Research in Italy – Advanced”). Questi pronostici infausti sono proclamati con tono compiaciuto da quasi tutti i miei informatori, ma non capisco se si tratti davvero di reali speranze oppure di scaramanzia rituale.

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Italian Modernities: recent contributions

431820_cover430961_coverTwo volumes have just been published in the Italian Modernities series (Peter Lang). Eccentricity and Sameness by Charlotte Ross contests the view that female same-sex desire is virtually absent from Italian literature and cultural production in the modern era.  Focusing on texts published between 1860 and 1939, she analyses the evolution of discourses on female same-sex desire in and across a wide variety of genres: bestsellers, texts with limited distribution and subject to censorship, and translations from other languages. Her wide-ranging discussion, incoporating scientists who condemned the degenerate nature of «Sapphic» desire, erotic publications that revelled in the pleasures of female same-sex intimacy, and portrayals of homoerotic desire by female writers, opens up new approaches to the discourses of sexuality in modern Italy. The second volume, Destination Italy, edited by Emma Bond, Guido Bonsaver and Federico Falloppa, is the product of a two-year interdisciplinary research project into representations of migration to Italy which brings together contributions from migration studies, linguistics, media, literature and film studies as well as essays by practitioners and activists. The discussions of how media, literature and cinema contribute to the public perception of migrants also provide a snapshot of the ways different representations of immigration capture, and fail to capture, migrant experiences.

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Il Paroliere: Italian Word of the Week-82

1000‘Non c’è più, sai’. ‘Chi?’ ‘Che cosa, vuoi dire’. ‘No, ti sto chiedendo di quel tuo amico che non si vede più. Quello famoso per 15 minuti’. ‘Ah, ho capito. Pensavo parlassi di uno straordinario evento astrologico’. ‘Astronomico, vuoi dire’. ‘Niente affatto. Sai, non devi prendere iniziative importanti in questo periodo’. ‘Ne sei sicuro? A me mi han detto di cambiare tutto’. ‘Ciao, Gregoria, cosa mi consigli?’

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Spunti e Ricerche: further call for papers for 2015 issue on Memory

UnknownSpunti e Ricerche has space for articles in its next issue (vol. 30, 2015). The theme is ‘Memory’ and contributions regarding the topic, in the broad context of Italian Studies – Literature, History, or Cinema, are welcome. Original unpublished papers in Italian or English, ready for peer-review, should be sent electronically in Word (MLA style) before 31 July to any of the following Editorial Board members: Tony Pagliaro, Carolyn James, Annamaria Pagliaro or Raffaele Lampugnani. They will also be able to provide any further information required.

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“Qui parlano i poveri cristi della Sicilia Occidentale… “

Danilo Dolci e Peppino Impastato

Danilo Dolci e Peppino Impastato

Scrisse Italo Calvino: ‘A vegliare a Partinico stanotte è la coscienza d’Italia, una coscienza che è per così poca parte rappresentata dalla classe dirigente, e che è amaro privilegio dei poveri’. Il motivo? La prima e unica trasmissione di Radio Sicilia Libera, la sera del 25 marzo 1970, ideata da Danilo Dolci, Franco Alasia e Pino Lombardo come denuncia della situazione nella Valle del Belice a più di due anni dal terremoto del 1968, chiusa dopo 26 ore dai carabinieri per violazione delle norme del codice postale. Un precedente, questo esordio della radio libera, da aggiungere alla celebrazione quest’anno del quarantesimo compleanno delle emittenti private.

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Purists, neo-purists and anti-purists: attitudes to foreign words in Italian

8f71921e-8f7c-43f3-9a7b-7e41dbea2cedMirna Cicioni (Monash University) will give a talk in English, ‘Purists, neo-purists & anti-purists: foreign words in Italian from the fascist ‘language campaigns’ to 2015′, at the RISM seminar to be held at the Italian Cultural Institute, 233 Domain Road, South Yarra, Melbourne on Thursday 9 April at 6.30pm. The talk’s starting-point is the linguist Valeria Della Valle’s documentary Me ne frego! Il fascismo e la lingua italiana (directed by Vanni Gandolfo, 2014), which shows how between 1929 and 1943 linguists and journalists close to the Fascist government participated in various campaigns for what was then called l’autarchia della lingua. Continue reading

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Luzi, Parronchi, Bigongiari: call for new work to celebrate their inspiration

logoThe editors of MOSAICI: Learned Online Journal of Italian Poetry are calling for submission of new work for the journal’s Creative Writing section. Last year marked the centenary of the births of Mario Luzi (1914-2005), Alessandro Parronchi (1914-2007) and Piero Bigongiari (1914-1997), poets who are admired but often go unsung. MOSAICI invites poets and writers on poetry to submit new work inspired by them or the spirit of rediscovery. Continue reading for details ….

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Transnational Italian Studies: Summer School in Venice, 21-24 September 2015

logo_withtextThe Transnationalizing Modern Languages project, based at the University of Warwick, invites applications from PhD students for its upcoming Summer School Transnational Italian Studies to be held in Venice, 21-24 September 2015. The Summer School provides an intensive four-day learning experience for a maximum of 15 students  interested in the study of Italian language and culture from a transnational perspective. The program consists of master-classes, lectures and roundtables given by international experts, as well as sessions in which students will have the opportunity to share their research and gain feedback from lecturers and peers. Participants will be presented with an array of innovative theoretical and methodological instruments which will enable them to analyse linguistic and cultural exchanges with a specific focus on modern Italy. They will also undertake a small research project in sites around Venice to put  these new tools into practice.

Bursaries covering accommodation expenses, lunch and tuition fees will be available. Further details on the course and the application procedure can be found here. The application deadline is 30 April 2015.
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Svevo e i suoi ordigni

CopertinaBartoloniLa coscienza di Zeno è un romanzo che pur essendo stato oggetto di analisi accurate, raffinate e lucide, continua a stupirci e a sedurci. Lascia ancora interdetti perché non si riesce a possederlo interamente, e perché continua a sfuggire di mano nonostante lo sforzo continuo di contenerlo. Adesso Paolo Bartoloni cerca di afferrarlo. Il suo libro recentissimo, Sapere di scrivere. Svevo e gli ordigni di La coscienza di Zeno (Catania, Edizioni Il Carrubo, 2015), si interroga sulle ragioni della contemporaneità di La coscienza di Zeno, romanzo inteso sia come oggetto  narrativo e di scrittura che come fonte di riflessione sulla crisi della modernità, e sullo “scandalo” del progresso umano agevolato dalla tecnologia e incentrato sullo sfruttamento degli altri e della terra. La coscienza di Zeno è un testo autoriflessivo, ma anche visionario e appassionatamente critico nei confronti di quel malessere morale, politico e sociale i cui effetti riverberano ancora nelle tensioni e nei conflitti tra ambiente, sostenibilità e crescita, e in quelli tra tolleranza e fanatismo, e tra violenza e pacifismo.

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