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Culture and Identity in Modern Italy

Instructor: Prof. Gregory Smith [see profile]
Disciplines: Anthropology

The course explores culture and identity in Italy, starting from the Italian historical awareness which emerged in the 19th century foundation of the nation, up to the present day. The focus is especially on culture and identity in the 20th century, using various materials and techniques, including lectures and readings, the screening of video material, and the study of audio recordings.

Students at the end of the course will have attained a significant understanding of the variety of ‘cultures’ in modern Italy, as well as having mastered an analytical framework for understanding everyday life in this country. The course carries up to contemporary times with an exploration of the impact global trends have had on Italian culture, making particular reference to contemporary popular music.


  • a mid-term exam
  • two ethnographies (5-6 pages each)
  • a final exam