ITAL2106 - Italian Romanticism

Value: 0.5 course units
Dr Enrico Palandri
Teaching structure:
one unseen two-hour written examination (100%); and coursework.

Module Description:

This module focuses on two major Italian authors of the early nineteenth century. Manzoni’s promessi sposi and Leopardi’s Canti and Operette morali are studied in relation to the Italian debate on Romanticism and to European culture and society. Manzoni’s practice as a historical novelist is examined in the context of contemporary discussions of history and fiction. The links between Leopardi’s poetry and his thought are explored. Close attention is paid to individual texts.

Preparatory Reading and Set Texts:

There are many good annotated editions of Manzoni’s I promessi sposi. Good English translations have been published by Dent (Everyman’s Library) and Penguin. For Leopardi’s Canti the best commentaries are in editions by G. and D. De Robertis, L. Russo, F. Flora, M. Fubini. For his Operette morali there are good editions by M. Fubini and C. Galimberti, and the parallel text translation published by University of California Press.

On the two writers, see:

  • A. Colquhoun, Manzoni and his Times (London, Dent, 1957).
  • I. Origo, Leopardi, A Study in Solitude (London, Hamilton, 1953).
  • S. B. Chandler, Alessandro Manzoni: the Story of a Spiritual Quest (Edinburgh, Edinburgh University Press, 1974).
  • G. Carsaniga, Giacomo Leopardi: the Unheeded Voice (Edinburgh, Edinburgh University Press, 1977).