Major Requirements

Note: Upon consultation with the Director of Undergraduate Studies, students who study abroad for a semester can apply two courses toward the Major, while those who study abroad for a full year may apply up to four courses toward the Major.


Course Requirements for the Major

The Italian major program takes an integrative approach to prepare students to explore connections and understand the continuum from past to present. From the Gateway course to the Senior Seminar, all courses are designed to introduce students to Italian culture in all its manifestations. Students develop their critical and analytical skills through intellectual dialogue in small class settings while the program’s integrated overseas experience gives students new perspectives and approaches to world issues.

Italian Majors are required to complete between 10 and 12 courses at Georgetown depending on the results of the online placement exam. A student will take 12 courses if they begin in ITAL 011: Intensive Basic Italian, 11 if they begin in ITAL 032: Intensive Intermediate Italian, or 10 if they begin in ITAL 111: Intensive Advanced Italian. One course taught in English may be applied toward the major. Italian Majors are also required to spend a semester or an academic year studying at an Italian university.

  • ITAL 009: Italian for Spanish and Romance Language Speakers
  • ITAL 010: Advanced Italian for Spanish and Romance Language Speakers
  • ITAL 011: Intensive Basic Italian
  • ITAL 032: Intensive Intermediate Italian
  • ITAL 110: Italian for Spanish and Romance Language Speakers 2
  • ITAL 111: Intensive Advanced Italian I
  • ITAL 112: Intensive Advanced Italian II
  • ITAL 231: Contemporary Italy (before overseas study) or another 200- or 300-level course
  • ITAL 233: Italian Writing and Culture*
  • ITAL 237: Business Italian

*Note: Since ITAL 233 is not offered every semester, make an appointment with your advisor or with the Department Chair to discuss possible alternatives if you will not be able to take the course.

Students will take one course from each of the following three groups:

Note: If no course from a particular group is being taught during the semester you need to graduate, make an appointment with your advisor or with the Department Chair to discuss possible alternatives.

A. From the Origins to the Renaissance

  • ITAL 311: Italian Art, Literature and History 1200-1500
  • ITAL 368: Politics, Society & Culture in Renaissance Italy
  • ITAL 374: Theater, Politics, and Art: Italian Renaissance
  • ITAL 375: Boccaccio: The Invention of Storytelling
  • ITAL 383: Dante’s Afterlife in Popular Culture
  • ITAL 385: Madness in Italian Literature and Theater
    (Can be used to fulfill any group requirement based on the student’s final paper)
  • ITAL 387: Love and Friendship in Medieval Italy

B. From Baroque to the Age of Realism

  • ITAL 358: Literature of United Italy
  • ITAL 370: Theater and Opera
  • ITAL 384: Theater and Opera
  • ITAL 392: The Theater of Power: Dynasties, Politics, and Theater, AD 1500-1800
  • ITAL 452: Theater of the Sacred: Between Faith and Politics
  • ITAL 473: Farewell to Realism: Decadence, Avant-Garde, Modernism

C. From Modernism to the Present

  • ITAL 321: Poetics of Lightness: Italo Calvino and Post-War Italian Culture
  • ITAL 337: Italian Cinema
  • ITAL 359: Bella Ciao! Women’s Identity in Twentieth Century Italy
  • ITAL 360: Giallo! Italian Detective Fiction
  • ITAL 380: Identity and Resistance in Fascist Italy
  • ITAL 390: Mafia: Reality and Fiction
  • ITAL 394: Italian-American Language/Literature/Film
  • ITAL 404: Italian Novels in the 20th Century
  • ITAL 425: From Mazzini to the Euro: The European Consciousness in Modern and Contemporary Italian Literature
  • ITAL 426: Encounters with the Other: The Ethnographic Imagination in Italian Literature
  • ITAL 445: Betrayals of Translation

Students will choose one additional course from any of the three Literature/Culture groups listed above.

All Italian Majors will take ITAL 460: Dante.