Masterpieces of Italian Literature: Defining Bodies

FRIT-M307 — Fall 2020

Akash Kumar
GA 0003 (Thursdays online)
Days and Times
1:10P-2:25P TR
Course Description

In this course, we will consider the body in medieval and premodern Italian literature, both in the metaphorical sense of the body of literature that is defined as the canon and in a more literal key of representations of the body with regard to gender, identity, health and disease. We will balance our approach between well-known figures like Dante, Boccaccio, and Petrarch and authors defined as a ‘minor,’ that serve to complicate our ideas of who matters and why. As we survey the wide landscape of Italian literature from the 13th to the 17th century, particular emphasis will be given to representations of gender roles within the works we read as well as a line of becoming that might, for example, connect Petrarch’s love poetry to Renaissance women who adapt and subvert his style for their own purposes. We'll also consider how the social role of the body is defined through representations of health and disease, connecting to key issues of contagion and pandemic in our contemporary moment.

This course will meet in person on Tuesdays, and synchronously online on Thursdays. 

Interested in this course?

The full details of this course are available on the Office of the Registrar website.

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