Academic year
2020/2021 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
LT2030 (AF:335811 AR:176346)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Class 1
Degree level
Bachelor's Degree Programme
Educational sector code
1st Semester
Course year
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The course, as part of the courses specifically related to the Languages taught in the LCSL degree course, enlarges the knowledge of the linguistic, literary and cultural heritage of Great Britain by focussing on the main characteristics of its history and its social and political culture, while – at the same time - further widening, through the reading of texts in the original language, the students’ lexical mastery of the English language.

The course will investigate, through the reading of classics and critical texts, the characteristic features and peculiarities of British history and British social and political culture, as they have developed historically over the centuries in the wider context of European history. Students will develop their critical capacity of analysis of those phenomenons, and their consciousness of the implied social, scientifical, and ethical issues. Through the analysis of the texts on the syllabus, the students’ capacity of critical understanding and judgement - in a language both specific and proper- will be enhanced, also in a larger comparative perspective involving their knowledge and experience of Italian national culture.
Advanced skills in reading texts in the English language.
Title: “ 'Ivanhoe', 'Old Mortality': Scott’s Version of British National History”.
Aim of this course is the identification and discussion of the essential features of British culture and British national identity as illustrated by Walter Scott at the beginning of the nineteenth century in his most celebrated historical novels. In 'Ivanhoe' and 'Old Mortality' Walter Scott portrayed the scene and context of two momentous episodes of British history: the Crusades and the great revolutions of the seventeenth century. But behind the historical conflicts between Saxons, Normans and Jews, and between Cavaliers and Puritans in the aftermath of the great Civil War, Scott highlighted, in the rich tapestry of the events and characters of his novels, the motives and features which, continually recurring and transforming themselves, contributed to the varied texture of the cultural and political identity of the United Kingdom.
Ideal attendance requires the reading of at least 'Ivanhoe' and 'Old Mortality' before the beginning of the lessons.

N.B. This course will be taught in Italian
Primary Sources (Only “Penguin Classics” or “Oxford World’s Classics”. Students must read them in English and be able to translate into Italian*):
W.Scott, 'Ivanhoe', ed. I.Duncan, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2008.
W.Scott, 'Old Mortality', J.Stevenson and P.Davidson eds., Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2009.

Secondary Sources:
G. Lukács, 'La forma classica del romanzo storico', in Id., 'Il romanzo storico'[1957], Torino, Einaudi, 1974, pp. 2-107 (G. Lukács, 'The Classical Form of the Historical Novel', in Id.,' The Historical Novel', Harmondsworth, Penguin, 1969, pp. 9-100).
E.Villari, 'Le premesse del romanzo storico. Le tre "voci" di Scott per l'"Encyclopaedia Britannica"', in "Contesti", 2-3, 1989-90, pp. 109-32.*
E.Villari, 'Narrativa, storia e costume: Walter Scott', in 'Storia della civiltà letteraria inglese', diretta da Franco Marenco, Torino, Utet, 1996, vol. II, pp.477-96. *
E.Villari, "‘Ivanhoe’, la cavalleria e il fanatismo nel disegno dei ‘Waverley Novels’", in E.Sdegnoa cura di, "Per Franco Marucci. Saggi di teoria e storiografia letteraria", Venezia, Libreria Editrice Cafoscarina, 2013, pp. 163-172. *
G.M.Trevelyan, 'A Shortened History of England' [1942], Harmondsworth, Penguin, 1987 (Book 2, pp. 118-180; Book 4, pp. 271-376).

Additional readings will be available in MOODLE ( )

(* Erasmus students may refer to the lecturer if they need a different syllabus, or a syllabus in a different language)

Starting from the reading and translation into Italian of a passage from 'Ivanhoe' or 'Old Mortality' chosen by the lecturer, the exam will be devoted to evaluating first the student’s capacity to understand the passage in all its linguistic and cultural details, and then his/her capacity to comment on the passage in English, in a larger discourse involving the whole novel, other passages from the same novel or from the other Scott novel on the syllabus, both in the light of the process which led to the formation of the nineteenth-century national identity and on the background of the historical, literary , political and cultural questions of the period discussed in class or in the set critical texts.
Lectures with class discussions.
Students who can’t attend lessons should refer to the lecturer for additional set texts and secondary works.

• Advised further reading available online

This subject deals with topics related to the macro-area "Poverty and inequalities" and contributes to the achievement of one or more goals of U. N. Agenda for Sustainable Development

This programme is provisional and there could still be changes in its contents.
Last update of the programme: 08/07/2020