Academic year
2022/2023 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
LM7435 (AF:400291 AR:221015)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Degree level
Master's Degree Programme (DM270)
Educational sector code
2nd Semester
Course year
Go to Moodle page
This course is inserted within the basic disciplines common to the curriculum of the MA degree Course. It aims to offer students the critical and linguistic tools to analyze a variety of texts and widen their awareness of the processes of cultural interaction as well as their oral and written abilities.
At the end of the course, students are expected to:

- know the authors and the works in English that have been dealt with in the course, as well as their historical and literary context;
- master the basic critical tools and the bibliographical references proposed by the instructor.
- apply the knowledge and the tools in order to carry out a close reading of the texts and interpret travel writing as a cultural phenomenon;
- to write a paper on a topic suggested by the instructor,
- to be able to expound concepts and data concerning the contents of the course in a clear and coherent way.
A good knowledge of the English and Italian Languages.
A basic knowledge of the history of English culture.
TITLE OF THE MODULE: The Alps and Venice through a Foreign Lens: travel writing as cultural mediation

Focussing on a variety of 19th century texts by British writers and artists this course explores the role of travellers as cultural interpreters and mediators. We shall consider the travelogue as a literary genre, and examine a number of poems, art essays, guidebooks, novels as well as pictures that display and shape new ways to look at Italian landscape and art works. We shall study how such visions of Italy, which are produced by a constant negotiation between a domestic literary, philosophical and religious tradition, and the traveller’s aesthetic experience of the place, significantly contributed to a redefinition of European cultural identity. In the second part, the students will work on the translation of some literary texts on travel.

A. Cultural background
- James Buzard, The Beaten Track, European Tourism, Literature, and the Ways to Culture, 1800-1918 (Introduction; chs. 1-2);
- Jim Ring, How the English Made the Alps, London, John Murray, 2000, chs 1-2;
- Emma Sdegno, "Introduction", Looking at Tintoretto with John Ruskin, edited by Emma Sdegno, Marsilio 2018.

B. Works
- Lady Montagu, Letters and Works, 1763
- Lady Morgan, Italy, 1821 P.B. Shelley, "Mont Blanc: Lines Written in the Vale of Chamouni (1817)
- G. G. Byron, Childe Harold's Pilgrimage;
- J. Murray, A Handbook to Northern Italy, 1852, 1867;
- Charles Dickens, Pictures from Italy (1846), Penguin 1998;
- Frances Trollope, A Visit to Italy (1842)
- Amelia Edwards, Untrodden Peaks and Unfrequented Valleys: A Midsummer Ramble in the Dolomites (1873).

Vladimir Nabokov, "L'arte della traduzione", Lezioni di Letteratura Russa, a c. di C. DE Lotto e S. Zinato, Adelphi, 2021, pp. 411-19;
M. Pfister, The Fatal gift of Beauty ( Amsterdam 1994);
R. Macfarlane, Mountains of the Mind, Granta book, 2003.

The primary texts and critical essays will be available on the Moodle platform after the beginning of the module.
The exam consists in a viva of about 20 minutes ascertaining the student's historical and critical competence, as well as in writing a 2500-word paper on a topic related to the course and previously approved by the instructor.
- Front lectures and class discussion
- lectures by invited scholars on literary translation and travel culture
- seminars on translation
written and oral
Definitive programme.
Last update of the programme: 11/07/2022