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The Department of Modern Languages and Culture
Invites you to a Lecture by Professor Maria Xenia Wells(University of Texas at Austin)
Thursday, April 29, 2:30 p.m. at
Bannan 102 Auditorium
(Followed by Reception at Xavier 121)
The lecture will explore the problems that for more than a century have troubled the South of Italy, from the creation of the Italian Kingdom in 1861 to our own century.
The South, with its ancient myths, poverty and malaria, could not be assimilated with the rest of the country by an act of political will, into an entity which only existed in the intent and hope, or illusion, of a central government, ill prepared to face the problems that this unification presented.
Carlo Levi, with his book Christ stopped at Eboli provides the historical background for this country forgotten by God and Men alike as he puts it at the beginning of his book. The presenter will briefly illustrate Levi's description of the South in his book and his paintings of Lucania.
The lecture will then focus on three films Christ stopped at Eboli, I am not scared and The flight of the Innocent and two books of the same titles by Carlo Levi and Niccolò Ammaniti.
The children in these works are presented as victims but also as redeemers. At the beginning of the movie The flight of the Innocent director Carlo Carlei quotes a line form a poem by Elsa Morante The world saved by the children - I would like to save you from the evil that robs your life and take you back to your little bed, to sleep. This quote is an appeal and an act of faith in the power of redemption, and a hope for a better future."
Maria Xenia Wells is an Adjunct Professor of French and Italian at the University of Texas at Austin, and Consultant for the Italian Collections. She is a distinguished and prolific researcher and she has been the curator of the Italian Collections at Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center at Austin for many years. Professor Wells published several catalogs and articles both in English and Italian and she has been invited to lectures in Europe and in the United States. Maria Wells received a Fulbright Research Award in 1991 and she has been a member of the UT Campus Fulbright Scholarship Committee until 2001. In 1992 she also received the prestigious title of Cavaliere nell’ordine del Merito della Repubblica Italiana. Presently Maria Wells is serving on the Scholarship Committee for the Zonta International Association of Business and Professional Woman and she is President of the Board of the Directors of Salon Concerts Inc. (chamber music) in Austin.
For more information please contact Giuseppe Tassone at (206) 296-2456 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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