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    Vassar College
  Dec 16, 2017
Catalogue 2017-2018
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ITAL 375 - Fictions of Youth: Youth Culture in Twentieth-Century Italian Literature

Semester Offered: Fall or Spring
1 unit(s)
The course examines the relationship between youth and literature in post-WWII Italy from a double perspective: adolescents as a literary subject, as protagonists of fiction and non-fiction, and as authors. Variously associated with innocence and vitality, innovation and peril, self-creation and anti-authoritarianism, youth long embodied individual and social ideals and fears in literature. In the twentieth century, it also increasingly suggested uncertainty and incompletion. As adolescence acquired importance in both the historical landscape and collective imagination, its symbolic connotations became progressively unstable. When young people wrote about themselves and their peers, first-hand experience mixed with inherited notions in unexpected ways. Using the Bildungsroman as a narrative model for the representation of youth in modern fiction, we study the different ways in which European and American coming-of-age novels influence modern Italian literature. The significance of youth in post-Fascist Italy, the construction of a generational identity through media and popular culture, and the creation of a new literary language for the expression of youth are some of the topics we address. Readings by Pasolini, Moravia, Tondelli, Brizzi, Santacroce, and others. Simona Bondavalli.

Prerequisite(s): ITAL 220 , ITAL 222 ; or ITAL 217 , ITAL 218  with permission of the instructor.

Not offered in 2017/18.

One 2-hour period.

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