In recent years scholars have revisited in new and creative ways the Mediterranean as a category of historical, cultural and anthropological analysis. The spatial turn in the humanities has led them to look beyond the narrow lenses of their case studies and to reframe their research within a wider regional and even global perspective. At the same time, new migrations and mobility of people reshaped (and are constantly reshaping) the landscape of the sea, inviting us to rethink the cultural geography of Italy and the Mediterranean, challenging conventional boundaries between East and West, North and South, distant and close seas.

It is these tendencies that the “Italian and Mediterranean Colloquium” aims to grasp and record. In welcoming a series of scholars, artists, journalists and intellectuals working on these themes, the Colloquium intends not only to place Italy and Italian studies within a Mediterranean and global framework, but also to yield the floor to voices studying different aspects of Mediterranean history, culture, literature and anthropology, from the early modern to contemporary times. It aspires thus to be a crossroad of people and ideas and a common space of discussion for scholars and students alike.


Pier Mattia Tommasino
Konstantina Zanou
For the Department of Italian, Columbia University