85107 - Middle Age and Reinassance Canon (1) (LM)

Academic Year 2022/2023

  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Italian Studies, European Literary Cultures, Linguistics (cod. 9220)

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course, students, by reading a series of texts, will be capable of acquiring in-depth knowledge of how the Italian literature of the Middle Ages and Renaissance evolved, with particular reference to the texts that profoundly influenced the subsequent literature and culture, so confirming the canon. Students will be capable of analysing texts, reading them with a critical eye and relating them to various temporal and social-cultural periods.

Course contents

The works of Dante Alighieri are a landmark of both the Italian and the European medieval literary canon, and have exercised a paramount influence on the Western cultural tradition as a whole. The course will introduce students to  a selection of crucial themes and episodes from the Commedia and other minor works; lectures and seminars will explore the context of late medieval Italian culture and society in which Dante's oeuvre has been produced, and will examine its afterlife and significance for modern literature and visual culture.


Dante, Vita Nuova, ed. by Mark Musa, Oxford University Press

Dante, Divine Comedy, ed. by Robert Durling and Ronald Martinez, Oxford University Press

The Cambridge Companion to Dante, ed. by Rachel Jacoff, Cambridge University Press

Teaching methods

Lectures and seminars involving class discussion and text analysis

Assessment methods

1 essay plan and bibliography (approx. 800 words) + 1 essay (approx. 5,000 words).

Assessment Criteria. To be awarded a final mark between 27 and 30 cum laude students are expected to: show the ability to analyse in depth literary texts following the methodology introduced by the lecturer and/or in the set critical readings; possess and be able to show a thorough and organic knowledge of the topics discussed in class and/or in the set readings; possess an excellent standard of expression (both written and verbal); show the ability to use properly the technical language of philology and literary criticism. A mark between 23 and 26 will be awarded to students who will show: a good knowledge of the course contents; the ability to provide an accurate analysis of literary texts (although there might be some minor imperfections); a good standard of expression (with occasional minor flaws in the presentation and/or in the use of technical language). Students obtaining a mark between 18 and 22 will typically show: an adequate but superficial knowledge of the contents; a basic understanding of the texts and a limited ability to analyse them, an acceptable standard of expression with a fairly competent (although not always accurate) use of technical language. Poor knowledge of the set texts and course topics, inadequate ability to analyse literary texts; inaccurate and inappropriate verbal and written expression with major problems in the use of technical language will result in a fail.


Please note that this course is part of a curriculum where attendance is mandatory. If you have extenuating circumstances and could not attend the classes for this course, you are required to do the same readings (listed above) and study the same course materials (available on Virtuale) used by attending students. However, before submitting the final paper, you are also required to pass an oral examination, which will last about one hour. The oral examination aims to assess your knowledge of the course materials and will include a short presentation of your planned paper.

Please note that students with extenuating circumstances, who were unable to attend the classes for this course, should contact the course tutor as soon as possible to discuss the syllabus, make arrangements for their oral examination, and agree on a topic and title for their final paper.

Please note: the final mark for non-attending students will come from: oral examination (50%) + final paper (50%).

Teaching tools

  • PowerPoint presentations
  • 'Virtuale' e-learning platform

Office hours

See the website of Angelo Maria Mangini


Quality education Gender equality Reduced inequalities

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.