31318 - Persian Linguistics and Language 3

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

Through the completion of this course the student is supposed to acquire stronger abilities in the intermediate level of Persian language. He is therefore supposed to able to approach the relevant literature and the problems related to it, by having recourse to the most updated bibliography.

Course contents

Overall theme
Literary culture in Persia in the post-classical era (16th-18th centuries): geographic areas, historical periodization, "literary styles", linguistic differentiations.

Specific contents
The course is intended to continue chronologically what has been acquired in the first year of study, and to deepen some aspects of literary culture which is defined as "beyond classicism" and is characterized by elements often referred to as "manieristic" or "baroque" ". In addition, we may discuss the presence of "different" realities and cultures from Persian, which express themselves in "minor" Iranian languages; special mention has to be made to the role played by Turkic languages, and finally to the presence on the territory of the Georgian "immigrants": the last is a significant element in the history of Persian culture as a whole.


Here follows a list of general and reference materials, to be consulted in some specific sections or chapters.

Language: A. PIEMONTESE, Grammatica Persiana in nuce, Roma-Pisa, 2004;
Dictionary: A. COLETTI, H. COLETTI GRUNBAUM, Dizionario Persiano-Italiano, Roma,Centro Culturale Italo-Iraniano, 1978. There is a reprint published in Italy in 2006 and subsequent reprinted editions in Iran.
M. PISTOSO, M. C. PUDIOLI (edited by), Dizionario Persiano-Italiano, Roma-Bologna, 2013: limited to a first volume of 731 pages, including alef-dal letters, is also available on CD-ROM.


G. SCARCIA, Letteratura Persiana, in Storia delle Letterature d'Oriente, diretta da Oscar Botto, Milano, Vallardi, 1969, Vol. II, of which see pp. 247-257 and 349-450. By the same author, and in the same volume, one can read Letterature Turche, essentially an overview of literary production that has as a vehicle a language generally called "Turkish", soon differentiated into several linguistic realities, some of which are internal (or contiguous) to the Persian world.


G. SCARCIA, Divano Occidentale. Un millennio di poesia persiana, Roma. Viella, 2017: a precious selections of persian poetry in italian translation.

A.M. PIEMONTESE, Storia della letteratura Persiana, Milano Fratelli Fabbri Editori, 1970, of which note volume II.

Ehsan YARSHATER, Safavid Literature. Progress or decline?, in "Iranian Studeies", 7, issue 1-2, 1974, pp. 217-270. A classical essay that addresses the question of the aesthetic significance of post-class Persian literature.

While reading some text in the original language - mostly works in prose belonging to the post-classical period - we will try to illustrate and deepen - as much as possible - the grammatical and syntactic aspects of the materials being studied.

I would like to point out, for a purely indicative purpose, some useful text for the purpose: Mir 'Ali Shir Nava'i, Muhakamat al-lughatayn ("The Contest of the Two Languages"), text and English translation by R. DEVEREUX, Leiden, Brill, 1965; Zeyn al-Din Mahmud Vasifi, Badaye al-vaqaye ("Extraordinary Events"), edited by A.N. BOLDYREV, Tehran, Bongah, and Ketab, 1966, in two volumes.

Teaching methods

Language of teaching is in general Italian with possibly references to other languages (namely Persian or English).

The course is intended as a sequence of lessons during which the teacher will share his teaching experience in the field, as well as ake advantage of any sort of question that will eventually arise from his auditory. A short course of modern Persian language (written and spoken) to be held by a mother language teacher with special qualification is also scheduled. As a form of support to the "official" teaching other events (lectures, conferences, book presentations and so on) are as a rule organized by the chair of Persian, which are linked with the contents of this course. For further information one is suggested to look at the Degree Programme's website.

Assessment methods

The examination will test the knowledge of the course contents (lessons; individual study texts; and the handbook, and so on).

If the student achieves a complete vision of the topics discussed in class and required for the discipline, provides an effective critical commentary, shows mastery of expression and of the specific language, both written and oral, he obtains excellence in the evaluation.

Average marks will be awarded to a student who has memorized the main points of the material and is able to summarise them satisfactorily and provide an effective critical commentary, while failing to display a complete command of the appropriate terminology.

A student will be deemed to have failed the exam if he displays significant errors in his understanding and failure to grasp the overall outlines of the subject, together with a poor command of the appropriate terminology.

Teaching tools

More or less sophisticated computer tools (videos, computer scripts) or very traditional (slides, paper, manuscript reproductions) can be used. It is also recalled that a specific part of the overall subject consists in an autonomous course held by a mother tongue scholar.

Office hours

See the website of Maurizio Silvio Pistoso