The Graduate Program in Italian Studies enables its students to pursue interdisciplinary work that creates dialogues between Italian literary, linguistic, and cultural production and other fields such as anthropology, comparative literature, cultural and visual studies, critical theory, film studies, geography, history, music, post-colonial studies, translation studies, women and gender studies. Students’ interdisciplinary interests are fostered by the UNC Italian faculty, who, in addition to helping to provide a broad knowledge of Italian literary and cultural history, teach courses on the Avant-gardes and post-structuralism, Renaissance theater, Humanism, dialects, and translation studies of and in post-war Italy.
In addition to coursework within the department, our students take advantage of a wide range of offerings from several departments on campus – such as English and Comparative Literature and Communication Studies – and have the opportunity to enroll in Italian seminars in the Department of Romance Studies at Duke University, with whom we collaborate closely. Furthermore, the Center for European Studies, the Program in Medieval and Early Modern Studies, the Program in Cultural Studies, Women’s Studies, and other programs provide opportunities for academic research and coursework.
Aiming to equip young scholars with the professionalization necessary to embark on careers as researchers and teachers, our program enables graduate students in Italian to teach a range of classes, including all levels of language, composition, conversation and, for advanced students, seminars on literature and culture. Graduate students develop mentoring relationships with teaching faculty and gain experience with recent language pedagogy and diverse instructional technologies. There are many initiatives in the department which allow graduate students to adopt leadership roles: coordinating an Italian film festival, the tavola italiana, writing contests, course coordination, and more.
Graduate students are also given the opportunity to collaborate with our department’s publications and plan events, the most visible of which is our annual departmental Carolina Conference on Romance Literatures, a two-day event now in its 20th year which brings together graduate students and professors from across the country for collegial exchanges on the most pressing current topics in Romance Studies.
Graduate students in Italian Studies have also the opportunity to apply for several competitive fellowships and for a year long period of teaching and research in Florence at the Istituto Lorenzo de’ Medici.