View of Siena


Each course is worth one full-year credit and is contingent on adequate enrolment. Students are not permitted to register for more than one course. 

Most classes take place Monday to Thursday. A detailed schedule will be available at the time of admission.  


CIN378Y0 Aspects of a National Cinema: The Italian Cinematic City – A Grand Tour

CIN378Y0 Aspects of a National Cinema: The Italian Cinematic City – A Grand Tour 

This course is inspired by, and comments on, the tradition of the “Grand Tour” of Italy, of which it follows the commonest trajectory from North to South in the attempt of recreating the experience of the many illustrious grand tourists who traced it. We will see Venice, Florence, and Rome, through the lenses of many great filmmakers who, across the decades, have engaged with their unique urban fabric, their monuments and landmarks, their streets, their culture, and their climate. We will ponder the implications of location shooting, the ethics of geographic manipulations, the idea of the city as character or as genre, and the phenomenon of cinematic tourism. The selected readings are compiled from an array of sources that include film studies, urban studies, literary fiction and non-fiction, art treatises, and poetry. This variety is intended to provide us with information on the films screened, as well as on the many clips and excerpts we will watch, but also on the cultural climate that influenced the filmmakers’ perception of the cities in which they were shooting and their relation with the classic texts of the Grand Tour. Taught in English and including film screenings.

Prerequisite: None
Breadth Requirement = 1
2021 Course Outline

Virtual Field Trips

Virtual visits and tours will be made to selected Italian cities such as Milan and Venice. 

Course Dates

Tuesday, August 3 to Thursday September 2, 2021


Course instructor, Alberto Zambenedetti, describes his course in greater detail in this video.


Alberto Zambenedetti is Assistant Professor in the Department of Italian Studies and the Cinema Studies Institute at the University of Toronto. He is the editor of World Film Locations: Florence (Intellect Books, 2014), of World Film Locations: Cleveland (Intellect Books, 2016), and the co-editor of Federico Fellini. Riprese, riletture, (re)visioni (Franco Cesati Editore, 2016). His scholarship has appeared in journals such as Annali D’Italianistica, Studies in European Cinema, Journal of Adaptation in Film and Performance, Short Film Studies, The Italianist, Quaderni d’Italianistica, The University of Toronto Quarterly, ACME, and Space and Culture. His criticism is posted on Gli Spietati ( He has curated the Italian editions of Home (Yann Arthus-Bertrand, 2009), It Seems to Hang On (Kevin Jerome Everson, 2015) and Dawson City: Frozen Time (Bill Morrison, 2016), and contributed essays to the home video releases of Fire at Sea (Gianfranco Rosi, 2016) and Dawson City: Frozen Time (Bill Morrison, 2016). His latest book is Acting Across Borders: Mobility and Identity in Italian Cinema (Edinburgh University Press, 2021).  

FAH393Y0 Studies Abroad in Renaissance and Baroque Art and Architecture

FAH393Y0  Studies Abroad in Renaissance and Baroque Art and Architecture 

This course will take advantage of its location, Siena, one of the most important centres of artistic production in 14th- and 15th century Italy to consider works of art in their original contexts and how they function amidst their civic and religious settings. The course spans the period from 1300 to 1650, examining the output of major protagonists, including Giotto, Simone Martini, Donatello, Michelangelo, Raphael, Caravaggio and Bernini, among others. Through activities such as close looking and class discussion this course will provide students with a renewed understanding of notions of style, scale, monumentality and magnificence, as well as the materials of making in the Renaissance and Baroque periods. Not eligible for CR/NCR option.


Prerequisite: One FAH half course in Renaissance or Baroque art and architecture/permission of instructor.
Breadth Requirement = 1
2020 Course Outline - for reference

Course Dates

Tuesday, August 3 to Monday August 30, 2021

Virtual Field Trips

Guest speakers for this course include curators, art historians, scholars of architecture and directors of museums who will virtually guide students through places such as the Bargello Museum and Museo Buonarroti in Florence; and the Galleria Estense in Modena. Students will also hear from the curator at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, who will offer an in-depth conversation on his work at the Museum's Conservation and Technical Research Department.


Educated in Italian and American universities, Giancarla Periti has published on the dense intersections between images and texts, vision and space, media and making. Her publications include: In the Courts of Religious Ladies. Art, Vision, and Pleasure in Italian Renaissance Convents (2016) and several edited volumes: Drawing Relationships in Northern Italian Renaissance Art (2004) and, with Alexander Nagel, Ravenna in the Imagination of Renaissance Art (2019). Periti’s current book revolves around questions of liminality and artistic geography in the art of Correggio, an impressive early modern painter. Periti’s teaching ranges from matters of art and fashion to questions of consumerism and rivalry in the visual culture of the Italian Renaissance.

ITA358/359Y0 Modern Italian Culture: Exploring Italian Culture, Then and Now

ITA358/359Y0 Modern Italian Culture: Exploring Italian Culture, Then and Now 

(Offered in English) Delve into the culture of Italy and survey key aspects of the country’s past and present.

Topics of study include:
- Unification
- World Wars
- Immigration and emigration
- Politics
- Economy
- Industries and “Made in Italy” 
- Visual and literary arts
- Gastronomy

Each lecture, reading, assignment, and co-curricular activity (film screening, virtual experience, etc.) enhances a different feature of Italian culture. Through active participation, students:

-  Contextualize modern-day Italian culture within historical, political, artistic frameworks, across the country, as a whole, and regionally;
- (Re-)Define italianità (Italian identity).
- Recognize how course content is relevant to them, their experiences, their interests.


Prerequisites: None
Exclusion: ITA245Y1 / ITA247H1 / ITA248Y1 / ITA358Y0 / ITA359Y0
ITA358/9Y0 – Preliminary Course Outline 2021

Virtual Experience - Field Trips

Students gain inside access to Italy’s most well-known industries, such as: Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamofashion houses (Florence), Ferrari exhibits (Modena), Parmigiano Reggiano (Parma), Cinecittà’s enchanting film studios (Rome). 


This course will run from August 3 to August 31, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9am to 1pm (EST). The half (9am - 11am) reserved for virtual lecture/class and second half (11am - 1pm) reserved for virtual field trips/experiential learning.


Professor Teresa Lobalsamo received her PhD in Italian Studies from the University of Toronto. She is honoured to be the recipient of UTM’s Teaching Excellence Award for Junior Faculty (2017-18). In line with her research foci, she teaches an array of cinema, culture, and experiential learning courses, such as Cucina Italiana, Mafia Movies, and Italian Theatre. Professor Lobalsamo believes that a meaningful university experience provides students with the opportunity to be productive inside and outside of the classroom: she integrates collaborative, real-world opportunities into all of her lectures so that students recognize the transferability of their university skills. Many of her courses feature local and international field excursions, allowing students to experience Italian culture firsthand. Recent scholarly activities focus on high impact practices and the benefits of study abroad.