This program offers you the opportunity to learn about Italian society and history first hand during a five-week residence in the beautiful Mediterranean port city of Genoa. Our academic focus will be on four themes—food, fashion, cinema, and cars—that reflect major aspects of Italian society and economy as it was transformed by industrialization, urbanization, war, and political upheaval during the 20th century.
The itinerary includes visits to the automobile industry in Turin, the fashion business in Milan, the cheese and wine region of Piemonte, and the center of Italian cinema in Rome. We will explore how all of these industries are linked in significant ways to US developments and the Italian-American community. Students will also work in the collections of FIU’s Wolfsonian Museum and its sister museum in Genoa, the Wolfsoniana.
The summer 2017 program organized by Dr. Douglas Kincaid focused on the "golden triangle" of Italy's postwar industrial and economic prosperity composed by Genoa, Milan, and Turin, and examined an aspect of each city as a means of studying social and economic transformation:
Genoa & Liguria: local cuisine and food production, and the "slow food" movement
Milan: fashion, design, market and industry
Turin: automobile design and production
The visit to Milan focused on fashion, with visits to the Livia Gregoretti designer/dealer showroom (not open to the public), the recently opened Armani Silos with Giorgio Armani's major collections through the years, lunch in the Navigli canal area of Milan, and a show at the Palazzo Reale on the 100 years of transformation of the major Italian department store La Rinascente. Then free time in the Quadrilatero della moda, the high fashion Montenapoleone shopping district.
What do we love about Italy, and why? This program offers you the opportunity to learn about Italian society and history first hand during a five-week residence in the beautiful Mediterranean port city of Genoa. Our academic focus will be on the country’s development during the 20th century, as it was dramatically transformed by industrialization, urbanization, war, and political upheavals. We will make comparisons to the same forces of change in the US. The itinerary includes visits to old and new centers of the Italian economy: Genoa’s medieval banking center, the automobile industry in Turin, the fashion business in Milan, and an olive oil farm in the Ligurian countryside. You will also be able to work in the collections of FIU’s Wolfsonian Museum and its sister museum in Genoa, the Wolfsoniana.
Though open to all students, the program is aimed at social science and history majors, and may be of interest to art history students as well. In addition, by completing the program you will qualify for up to 60% of the required credits for a Certificate in European Studies.
Summer C 2017
May 15-June 9: Classes in Miami Beach at the Wolfsonian Museum
June 11-July 15: Classes and other activities in Genoa
July 28: Final program activity at the Wolfsonian Museum
the program fee is $2,425 and includes housing, textbooks, train fares for field trips, museum and fair admissions, some local transportation in Genoa, and mandatory health insurance.
The program fee does not include airfare, meals, most local transportation in Genoa, FIU tuition ($205.57/credit, 9 credits total), and the $175 study abroad fee.
Turin is the seat of the FIAT company, one of the drivers of Italy's economic boom in the 1950s and early 1960s, recently joined with the Chrysler company with the aim of becoming a competitive global brand.
Every town and region of Italy has a unique cuisine shaped by landscape and custom. The cuisine of Genoa and Liguria is noted for its lightness and simplicity. Pesto is perhaps the most famous dish, a sauce for pasta made from locally-raised basil, pine nuts, and olive oil.
The "slow food" movement will also be examined. It began as a response to "fast food" and emphasizes seasonal produce, artisanal production, and traditional recipes.
Milan is a global center for the fashion and design industry, and plays a major role in Italy's economy. The trip to Milan will include a visit to a design showroom (not open to the public), a tour of the fashion district, and a visit to the Triennale Design Museum.
An important component of the FIU Genoa program is our rapport with the Wolfsoniana and its sister collection in Miami, the Wolfsonian. A collection of art and objects amassed by Mitchell Wolfson, Jr. that suggest the transformation of Italian (and Western) society from the turn of the century to the post-war period, it is a unique resource to inform the kind of critical thinking that we encourage. Wolfsoniana curators Matteo Fochessati and Gianni Franzone gave lectures, conducted tours of the collection, and assisted in the students' independent research.