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Calendar of Events

La seconda volta (1995), by Mimmo Calopresti Friday 3/18/11

Friday, March 18, 8:00 p.m., Carlson Auditorium (Bldg. 76)

Professor Elisabetta D'Amanda (Film screening, master class and discussion)

La seconda volta, the first film by Mimmo Calopresti, recounts the encounter of Professor Alberto Sajevo and Lisa Venturi, an ex-terrorist who, fifteen years earlier, had severely wounded Sajevo in a terroristic attack. In this tale of the post-terrorism scenario, the characters have an opportunity to debrief the "Anni di piombo (lead years)," as the period of Italian terrorism has been named, in the years after the fall of the Berlin Wall. This film has been awarded two David di Donatello (the Italian Academy Award) in 1996.

"Dante's Politics in Hell" Thursday 3/24/11

Thursday, March 24, 10:00 a.m., CLA Auditorium (Bldg. 06, Room A205)

Prof. Joseph Fornieri (Open lecture. Course: Political Theory)

A work of enduring significance, Dante's Divine Comedy profoundly influenced Italian culture and language as the first great literature written in the vernacular. While primarily thought of as Christian epic poetry, the Divine comedy is actually a multifaceted work of politics, theology, and ethics. In "Dante's Politics in Hell," political scientist Joseph R. Fornieri will show how Dante's political teaching concerning the Holy Roman Empire in De monarchia is reflected in his allegorical depiction of Inferno as Thirteen Century Florentine politics.

La parola amore esiste (1998), by Mimmo Calopresti Tuesday 3/29/11

Tuesday, March 29, 7:00-10:00 p.m., CLA Auditorium (Bldg. 06, Room A205)

Professor Elisabetta D'Amanda (Film screening, master class, and discussion)

In La parola amore esiste, Calopresti focuses on a woman suffering from compulsive-type psychological problems who falls for an older divorced neighbor. The complex tale that stylistically connects to the Nouvelle Vague is an opportunity to challenge the bourgeois construction of mental illness and to reaffirm humanity.

"Thoughts on Francis and on the History of Art" Wednesday 4/13/11

Wednesday, April 13, 5:00-5:50 p.m., Eastman Bldg., Room 2000 (Bldg. 01)

Prof. Michaël Amy (Public lecture)

Francis understood the power of images; a crucifix -after all- moved him to restore a church, and subsequently the Church. Significantly, narrative images occupy a prominent position in Franciscan devotion, and in his treatise on painting of 1435, Alberti will praise "istoria" or edifying narrative, as the most significant type of painting an ambitious artist could produce. In order to create compelling narrative images, the artist must be able to convey the body in motion, one of the central preoccupations of the Renaissance artist. Having received the stigmata, Francis was able to re-present himself as a new Christ, whose body became the focus of increased fascination in the wake of the Council of 1215.

Italian Baroque Sunday 4/17/11

Sunday, April 17, 2:30 pm, St. Andrew's Church, 901 Portland Avenue, Rochester

Prof. Michael Ruhling, Director; RIT Chamber Orchestra; RIT Orchestra Winds and Brass, with guest soloist Jonathan Kruger

Instrumental repertoire from the Italian Baroque will be performed by The RIT Chamber Orchestra and RIT Orchestra Winds and Brass, with guest soloist Jonathan Kruger. This concert is part of the Music at St. Andrew's Concert Series, and one of the RIT College of Liberal Arts spring quarter Italian Culture events. In the repertoire, music by Gabrieli (Canzon septimi toni), Monteverdi (Toccata from Orfeo), Torelli (Trumpet Concerto in D), Corelli (Concerto Grosso in C minor), Vivaldi, (Concerto Grosso in A minor), Bach (Brandenburg Concerto No. 3).

La fabbrica dei tedeschi, by Mimmo Calopresti Monday 4/18/11

Monday, April 18, 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m, Webb Auditorium (Bldg. 07B)

Mimmo Calopresti, Director (Film screening, master class, and discussion)

In this documentary, director Mimmo Calopresti focuses on the death of six workers at the steel factory Thyssen Krupp in Turin in 2008. The factory, which used to be the pride of steel production in Italy, was operating below safety standards. Working between fiction and traditional documentary, Calopresti addresses the workers. conditions in Italy in the new scenario of post-globalization; he moves from the issue of safety progressively to expand to the loss of rights of the workers. movement from the seventies to today.

"Politics, Music, and Italian Patriotism: Mazzini and Verdi" Wednesday 4/20/11

Wednesday, April 20, 2:00 p.m., SAU Music Room (04-A120)

Prof. Joseph Fornieri and Michael Ruhling (Open lecture. Course: Italian Opera)

The arts have often been used to communicate the desires of a people in the face of oppression and political unrest. During the middle of the 19th century, the philosophical and political “Soul of Italy” was expressed by Giuseppe Mazzini, who strongly advocated for a unified and independent Kingdom of Italy, free of the Austrian yoke. Mazzini’s ideas were plainly influential on the operatic works of Giuseppe Verdi—operas which vivified calls for independence and strengthened the people’s resolve for Risorgimento. Professors Fornieri and Ruhling will present Mazzini’s and Verdi’s patriotic personalities as a prelude to exploring the opera Nabucco, considered one of Verdi’s most nationalistic stage works.

"Viva L'Italia! at the Table: Italian Food by RIT Dining Services" Monday 4/25/11

Wednesday, April 25, RIT Dining Locations

April 25th is an Italian national holiday that marks the Liberation of Italy (1945) from the Nazi-Fascist occupation at the end of World War II. On this day, opportunities to savor Italian food will be available at all major locations on the RIT campus thanks to Chief Stephen and the RIT Dining Services. Among the culinary options available:

  • Brick City Café Chicken Marsala, Sun-Dried Tomato Risotto, Stuffed Shells
  • Ritz Meat Lasagna-Take Home Meal
  • Artesano Anis Biscotti, Tiramisu
  • Commons-Dinner Menu Asiago Crusted Chicken, Rosemary Garlic Studded Pork Loin, Eggplant Parmesan, Asparagus & Parmesan Risotto, Redskin Potatoes, Broccoli Rabe, Zucchini & Squash
  • Crossroads Braciole, Pizza & Calzones
  • Gracies Baked Ziti and Pasta Bar

Viva l’Italia! Five Centuries of Italian Music Saturday 4/30/11

Saturday, April 30, 3:00 p.m., Ingle Auditorium

Prof. Michael Ruhling, Director; RIT Orchestra Concert

The RIT Orchestra, with special guest vocal soloists Elizabeth Phillips and Pablo Bustos, will perform operatic and instrumental selections by Italian composers from the 16th to the 20th centuries, including works by Monteverdi, Vivaldi, Rossini, and Verdi. Audience members will also have the opportunity to sing along with a few of the pieces!

“The Modern as Interruption of the Tradition” Monday 5/2/11

Monday, May 2, 12:00-1:50 p.m., Bldg. 06, Room 2233

Prof. Ugo Perone and Silvia Benso (Open lecture. Course: Contemporary Italian Philosophy)

Philosophically, modernity begins with Descartes’ gesture that, breaking with the tradition, grounds truth on the immediate certainty of the thinking subject. From then on, philosophy is based on the precarious ground of finitude. After the French Revolution, Descartes’ gesture is extended to society and history, thus inaugurating a new role and importance for politics. In this lecture, we will explore some of the consequences that Descartes’ novel gesture has with respect to fundamental philosophical concepts such as time, history, subjectivity, humanness.

“The Subject and Time” Wednesday 5/4/11

Wednesday, May 4, 12:00-1:50 p.m., Bldg. 06, Room 2233

Prof. Ugo Perone and Silvia Benso (Open lecture. Course: Contemporary Italian Philosophy)

Contemporary philosophy oscillates between the primacy of the individual and openness to the other. In this lecture, I will discuss the importance of holding to the notion of the subject within the postmodern scenario that deconstructs subjectivity. I will also delineate a configuration of time that, beyond individualized notions of temporality as well as abstractly universalistic concepts of time, focuses on the present as the dimension that makes living-together possible.

“Ethics, Norms, Exceptions” Thursday 5/5/11

Thursday, May 5, 4:00-5:30 p.m., Carlson Auditorium (Bldg. 76, Room 1125)

Prof. Ugo Perone (Public Lecture. Part of the Hale Ethics Series)

Our tradition has mainly charged ethics with the task of elaborating norms having universal validity. Ethics has therefore assumed a prescriptive character that precedes concrete moral actions and that seems to retain more of a social validity (the constitution of a collective ethos) than of a real help to the individual who is confronted with ethically relevant questions. Although I do not intend to deny that there is a part of ethics concerned with the general determination of norms, I will focus my attention on the concrete dimension of ethical action; within this dimension, the attention is not on the rule but on the exception. How should one accept exceptions at the ethical level and not turn them into an unmotivated suspension of the rule? How to valorize, still at the ethical level, the individuals’ ability to offer behavioral exceptions that may nevertheless constitute ethical models?

“Public Space and Its Metaphors” Friday 5/6/11

Friday, May 6, 3:00-5:00 p.m., Eastman Bldg., Room 2000 (Bldg. 01)

Prof. Ugo Perone (Public Lecture. Part of the RIT Undergraduate Philosophy Conference)

The political does not exist. What exists is individual and collective life; there is nature, with its inexhaustible cycles; there is the world, the (blind and astute) interlacement of the actions, conflicts and visions that will become history. The political exists only as an invention: the invention of the specific space of the relation that intercepts life, modifies nature, and is a curvature of the world. I would like to dwell on this invention, not without warning that the political of which one speaks precedes and constitutes specific kinds of politics, since it is the condition of their possibility. The town square will be examined as a metaphor for the way in which the political as an invention works.

"Drama in La bohème" Monday 5/9/11

Monday, May 9, 2:00 p.m., SAU Music Room (04-A120)

Prof. Peter Ferran and Michael Ruhling (Open lecture. Course: Italian Opera)

Puccini’s 1895 opera La bohème is among the most loved operas of all time, and a fine representative of the verismo operatic genre. Professors Ferran and Ruhling will discuss the dramatic and musical characteristics of La bohème, how these characteristics aim to create an effective audience experience, and how they demonstrate the specific stylistic goals of verismo opera.

All events are free and open to the public. Registration is required for the open class lectures. To register, contact one of the organizers.