“Talk to the Hand”: Italian studies announces their Spring lecture series

There could be no more powerful image of the growing agency of Italian women in the early modern period than the raised hand of Judith in Artemisia Gentileschi’s painting “Judith and Her Maidservant with the Head of Holofernes, 1623.” This woman’s gesture, who demands to be heard, evokes the taking up of paintbrushes, pens, and scientific instruments by women in Italy over the 300-year span.

The Italian studies program presents “Talk to the Hand: Agency in the Lives of Italian Women 1500-1800” by Dr. Clorinda Donato. The talk will be held at 5 p.m. Feb. 10 on Zoom. The event is free and open to the public.

In the lecture, Donato will discuss the role of women and their agency through the decisive strategies they took to render their accomplishments visible in early modern Italy. 

Artemisia Gentileschi - Judith and Her Maidservant with the Head of Holofernes - 52.253 - Detroit Institute of Arts
Artemisia Gentileschi – Judith and Her Maidservant with the Head of Holofernes – 52.253 – Detroit Institute of Arts

Donato is a French and Italian professor at California State University, Long Beach, where she directs the Clorinda Donato Center for Global Romance Languages and Translation Studies. She works on eighteenth-century knowledge transfer through translation and genre adaptation in encyclopedic compilations, gender in medical and literary accounts, and book history. Recent publications include “The Life and Legend of Catterina Vizzani: Sexual Identity, Science and Sensationalism in Eighteenth-Century Italy and England” (Oxford University Studies in the Enlightenment, Liverpool University Press 2020) and “John Fante’s ASK THE DUST: A Gathering of Voices,”  co-edited with Stephen Cooper (Fordham University Press, 2020). 

Italian studies spring lecture series continues with:

  • 5 p.m. Feb. 24 on Zoom – “The Shapes of Italian American History” presented by Dr. Willian Connell, Seton Hall University, New Jersey.
  • 5 p.m. March 10 on Zoom – “Pasta: tradition and innovation in Italian food culture” presented by Dr. FAbio Parasecoli, New York University.
  • 5 p.m. March 24 on Zoom – “The best cinema in the world, a lecture on contemporary Italian cinema” presented by Dr. Antonio Iannotta, University of San Diego.

For more information, please contact Dr. Andrea Polegato, apolegato@csufresno.edu.

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The College of Arts and Humanities provides a diverse student population with the communication skills, humanistic values and cultural awareness that form the foundation of scholarship. The college offers intellectual and artistic programs that engage students and faculty and the community in collaboration, dialog and discovery. These programs help preserve, illuminate and nourish the arts and humanities for the campus and for the wider community.

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