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Mafia and Comedy in Contemporary Italian Cinema

Wednesday, March 8, 2017 at 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Klein Conference Room, Room A510, Alvin Johnson/J.M. Kaplan Hall Room 510, 66 West 12th Street, New York, NY 10011

Three recent Italian movies — Song e Napule (2013) by the Manetti’s Brothers, Mozzarella Stories (2011) by Edoardo de Angelis, and Into Paradiso (2010) by Paola Randi — indicate a new way of representing the Neapolitan Camorra that employs comedy and refuses to portray Naples in simplistic terms. This presentation will explore how this comic approach to treating the Camorra (and by extension the Mafia generally) is a result of a better understanding of how organized crime works, a reduction in high-profile murders and a population that’s generally less afraid of the Mafia. Furthermore, this analysis will show how the use of comedy allows filmmakers to paint a more complex portrait of the city of Naples.

Dr. Giovanna De Luca, Professor of Italian at the College of Charleston, South Carolina, will provide context. Her research interests are Italian cinema, 20th- and 21st-century Italian literature, comparative literature, literary and film theory and cultural studies. She won the Best Essay Fellowship from the Grand Marnier-New York Film Festival at Lincoln Center competition (1999). Her articles have appeared in Filmcritica, Film Comment, Quaderni d’Italianistica and Forum Italicum. She is the author of the book Il punto di vista dell’ infanzia nel cinema italiano e francese: rivisioni, which was published by Liguori Editore in 2009, and currently is writing a book on the representations of Mafia in American and Italian cinema. At the College of Charleston, she has organized several popular Italian Film Festivals which draw large audiences and important guest speakers and filmmakers.

Host: Sara Villa, Assistant Professor of Spanish, The New School

Sponsored by the Department of Foreign Languages, School of Languages

 

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