3 semester credits. The first half of this course will focus on Italy in the immediate postwar period, investigating the quasi civil war between the fascists and partisans prior to the formation of the Italian Republic in 1948. The second half of this course will focus on the attempt at building a new national identity after the fall of Fascism; the Cold War and its impact on Italian politics, culture and society; the North-South divide; the economic miracle; the southern and Mafia issue; and the role of the European Union and Italy as a multicultural nation.
LAHSCI360 Contemporary Italy
LAHSCM252 Crime and Mystery History Walks in Renaissance Florence
3 semester credits. This course focuses on mysteries and crimes committed in Florence, in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The course retraces significant historical episodes that shed light over the ways crime and punishment has been framed and dealt with through a series of academic walks in Florence. Topics include the fight between Guelphs and Ghibellines, the persecution of the ill during the Black Death, the Pazzi conspiracy against the Medici, magic rituals and with-hunting, the judicial system of the time, and the morbid stories about Michelangelo, Da Vinci, and Donatello. A multi-disciplinary model is adopted to cross-analyze criminological, judicial, and social phenomena.
LAHSCM254 Crime And Mystery History Walks in Modern and Contemporary Florence
3 semester credits. The course explores some of the key criminal behaviors and the history of criminology in relation to episodes that occurred in Florence from the 18th century until today. Topics include the abolishment of death penalty in the Grand Duchy of Tuscany, the history of asylums for the criminally insane and the theories of Cesare Lombroso on physical anomalies, the massacres conducted during Fascism, the perpetuation of political homicides by terrorist groups, the investigations of the murders of the first Italian serial killer, Mafia attacks, the practice of murder-suicide, and hate crimes. A multi-disciplinary model is adopted to cross-analyze criminological, judicial, and social phenomena, with a focus on the ways criminology has evolved.
LAHSCM390 Contemporary Mafia and Antimafia
3 semester credits. This course presents the specific structural and phenomenological aspects of the various types of mafia operating in Italy and internationally. Topics analyze contemporary criminal, social, cultural, and political features of mafia-related groups and explore traditional and emerging illegal markets. The course describes main Italian and international law policies and legislations to contrast this type of organized crime and the experiences of leading individuals and groups developing a culture of legality to combat the mafia.
LAHSFW280 Florentine Art Walks
3 semester credits. This course examines the city of Florence with themed walks offering a comprehensive approach to the city as an open-air cultural, historical, and artistic research site from its Roman foundation to its contemporary Zeitgeist. Students will learn the history of the city through its art: they will understand how buildings, streets, squares, and monuments can be mapped as living traces of multiple, overlapping layers of a complex past, and how to encode them in their personal appropriation of the city. Starting from learning how to decode the artistic environment of the city and to unveil its traces – both visible and invisible – the course aims at understanding the main social and cultural reasons underlying the existing shape of the city. The course explores traces and evidences from Roman times through Middle Ages, Renaissance, Mannerism and Baroque, up to Art Nouveau and contemporary Florence. Students will be provided with a consistent theoretical background related to relevant historic-artistic landmarks and their social and cultural context and main characters (Guelphs vs. Ghibellines, the Florentine Guilds, Dante, the Medici family, Botticelli, Michelangelo, Ghirlandaio, Ammannati, Pontormo, etc.). Students will be encouraged to develop their own experiential tools and strategies to approach the city through guided field learning activities that assess research, on-site involvement, and academic outcome for each themed walk in Florence. The classroom approach of this course is based on experiencing the city of Florence as the academic space for learning and engagement. Classes are not held in a traditional, frontal-style setting; each lesson is carefully mapped for curricular content and featured locations: lectures, observations, exercises, analysis, and reflections on presented topics are held in relevant sites that are accounted for in the academic planning, syllabus, and related course material. Coursework and submissions will be regularly assessed on the MyFUA platform through daily assignments in addition to exams, papers, and projects. Learning through the on-site classroom approach fosters a deeper understanding of the cultural environment of Florence and how it is related to the subject of study represented by the course, and allows the overall experience to contribute to the students' academic and personal enrichment.
LAHSGR340 Galileo and the Scientific Renaissance
3 semester credits. Galileo Galilei was one of the founding fathers of the modern scientific world who lived and worked for the larger portion of his life in Florence under the protection of the ruling Medici family. His life and works are a landmark in the history of science. What did he do and why is it so important? This course is designed to introduce the students to the intellectual ferment of the Renaissance, which produced the revolutionary figure of Galileo. Both the works of Galileo and his contemporaries will be examined. Visits to scientific museums and institutions in Florence form an integral part of this course.
LAHSHM380 History of the Mafia
3 semester credits. This course discusses the origins and development of the Mafia in the context of Italian politics, economics, and society from the nineteenth century to the present day. It analyzes the nature of Mafia activities and their international relevance. Special focus will be given to judicial procedures against the Mafia and the experiences of key individuals and groups contrasting their illegal activities.
LAHSIR330 History of the Italian Renaissance
3 semester credits. This course explores the meaning of the term "Renaissance" when applied to the period of Italian history from circa 1350 to 1550. The subject will be approached from a variety of standpoints: social, political, economic, intellectual, scientific, and artistic. The focus will be on the concept of Italian Renaissance Humanism and on the relationship between art and society during this period. Lectures will be supplemented by a number of visits to key historical sites in Florence. Field activities and museum visits are an integral part of the course.
LAHSMF230 The Medici Family: A Florentine Dynasty
3 semester credits. This course traces the rich and varied history of the Medici family, whose name has become almost synonymous with the history of Renaissance Florence itself. Beginning with the rise of the Medici bank under the astute and mindful Cosimo the Elder in the early fifteenth century, and concluding with the death of Gian Gastone de' Medici and the opulent luxuries of his princely palace in 1737, this course examines the Medici as bankers, statesmen, patrons of the arts, entrepreneurs and, ultimately, as absolute rulers of the state of Tuscany. The role of the family's female counterparts will also be examined, especially in relation to their dynastic marriages that linked the Medici to leading European political powers. Visits to key Medici historic sites (palaces and villas) are an essential component of the course.
LAHSSH370 Shoah: The Holocaust in History
3 semester credits. This course explores the origins, causes, and aftermath of the Nazi attempt to exterminate European Jews in an industrialized and systematic act of genocide from 1933 to 1945. Following a survey of the history of antisemitism in its various forms, the course will cover German policies and an analysis of European and American political reactions and policies in the face of unfolding events. Although the course is strongly rooted in history and politics, the Shoah will also be examined from a psychological and sociological perspective. Lectures and class discussions will be supplemented by the viewing of films and documentaries.
LAHSSR350 Love, Sex, and Marriage in Renaissance Italy
3 semester credits. Beginning with an examination of the "how to" advice manuals common to Italian households during the Renaissance period, this course explores various aspects of sexuality in Renaissance Italy. These aspects range from the aforementioned self-help books aimed at instructing young couples in sexual pleasure, to conception and childbirth, and an examination of the differing social roles of the common prostitute (meretrice) and the high-class courtesan (cortigiana). The theme of male homosexuality will also be explored with special focus placed on the intellectual climate of Renaissance Florence where the prevailing interest in Neoplatonic philosophy may have played a part in creating a more lenient moral climate for homosexuals. Discussions will take cue from Renaissance art in which erotic subjects became increasingly popular in courtly circles in the sixteenth century. Museum visits form an integral part of this course.
LAHSWC230 History of Western Civilization from Antiquity to 1500
3 semester credits. This course guides the student through the rise of society in Ancient Greece and Rome, the Middle Ages, and the European Renaissance. This span of European history is examined from many viewpoints including the intellectual, scientific, cultural, economic, political, and social. This course includes museum visits.
LAHSWI350 The Second World War in Italy and Its Aftermath
3 semester credits. This course examines the Second World War as it was fought in Italy from July 1943 to May 1945, and its effects on postwar Italy. The battle for Italy was remarkable because it involved not only conventional warfare between the German and Allied armies but also an overlapping and vicious "civil war" between fascist and anti-fascist Italians. There is also the issue of the Catholic Church's neutrality, the incursion of Tito's Yugoslav partisans, and the deportation of Italian Jews to the death camps. The course will include lectures, visits related to the civil conflict in Florence, and viewings of Italian films of exceptional caliber relating to the war in Italy. Students will also be assessed on one of three Italian novels relating to this period.