XVII Week of Italian Language in San Francisco

Oct 19, 2017 110

BY: Paolo Barlera

The Italian Cultural Institute and the Consulate General of Italy in San Francisco are proud to announce the 2017 edition of the “Settimana della Lingua italiana nel Mondo” (Week of Italian Language in the World), which takes place October 16-21 in coordination with the Italian Embassy in Washington.

Each year, in the third week of October, the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs selects a theme for this initiative and promotes a series of events through its diplomatic and cultural network, under the High Patronage of the President of the Italian Republic. The theme chosen for this year's edition is "Italian at the Movies, Italian in the Movies," a tribute to the role that cinema, through the narrative connected to the history of Italy, played both in the evolution of the language and in the development of society.

In San Francisco, the “Week” already had a captivating prologue, with one of Italy’s most critically acclaimed contemporary novelist, Nicola Lagioia (winner of the 2015 Strega Prize), who participated in the literary festival Litquake on Friday, October 13, and presented the newly published translation of his novel Ferocia (Ferocity) at Libreria Pino in North Beach on Saturday, October14.

This week, the program continues with “A Taste of Italian,” an open house and language fair organized by the Institute and its affiliated school, Istituto Italiano Scuola, to showcase all the opportunities to learn Italian – from day & evening classes offered at our Opera Plaza location to scholarships offered by schools in Italy for a full immersion. One of these schools, “La Lingua La Vita” (from Todi, Umbria) will present a seminar on olive oil and food of their region.

Italian language and culture courses are increasingly numerous in the United States. Every year students of all ages and backgrounds choose to learn Italian at various institutions, including Italian Cultural Institutes, Universities and High Schools. In addition to representing the language of tradition and heritage for many Italian-Americans, Italian is today an extraordinary vehicle for promoting Italy, the Italian lifestyle and the image of a country that is not only synonymous with beauty, but also of innovation and modernity.

As a focal point of the Week’s theme, one of the authors who best embody the connection between film, language, and literature, Pier Paolo Pasolini, will be discussed in three events with Barth David Schwartz, the author of the only English language biography of the Italian writer/filmmaker, Pasolini Requiem. Drawing on the newly published, updated version of his book, Mr. Schwartz will speak at San Francisco State University on October 18, UC Berkeley on October 19, and the Italian Cultural Institute on October 20, in conversation with film scholar Noa Steimatsky.

The Week will wrap up with an epilogue devoted to Luigi Pirandello, on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of his birth. On October 25, Prof. Laura Wittman (Stanford) and Prof. Michael Subialka (UC Davis) will participate in a panel discussion entitled “Pirandello’s Cinematic Visions.” On November 1, the screening of the Taviani Brothers’ film, Kaos – based on some of the best short stories by the Sicilian writer and playwright – will conclude the program. This last event is also the third installment of the Institute’s “Literary Locations” series, which is set to explore Pirandello’s native land, Sicily. Both events will be at the Italian Cultural Institute, 601 Van Ness Avenue, San Francisco.

For more information: www.iicsanfrancisco.esteri.it

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