COVID-19: Essential Information

Stefano Mula

Professor of Italian

 work(802) 443-5530
 On leave 2021-2022
 Voter Hall 115

Stefano Mula is Professor of Italian at Middlebury College, VT. He has a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Cagliari, Italy, and a DEA in Histoire et Civilization from the EHESS in Paris, France. Before joining the Middlebury faculty, he taught at the University of Chicago and at Northwestern University. He has also been Visiting Professor in the Humanities at the University of Cagliari, Italy, in 2009/2010. His research interests are medieval narrative structures; the intersection of literature, ethics, and religion; philology; Cistercian exempla; hagiography; and Arthurian literature.

Stefano has collaborated to the French translation of James of Voragine’s Golden Legend: Jacques de Voragine, Legende Dorée, under the direction of A. Boureau, with M. Goullet and P. Collomb, L. Moulinier and S. Mula (Paris, 2003). Among his publications are ‘Muhammad and the Saints: The History of the Prophet in the Golden Legend,’ Romance Philology 101.2 (2003): 175-188; ‘Looking for an Author: Alberic of Trois Fontaines and the Chronicon Clarevallense’, Cîteaux. Commentarii Cistercienses 60 (2009): 5-25; ‘Les exempla de Pierre Damien et leur diffusion aux XIIe et XIIIe siècles,’ Le Tonnerre des exemples. Exempla et médiation culturelle dans l'Occident. M.A. Polo de Beaulieu, P. Collomb, and J. Berlioz, eds. (Rennes, 2010), 161-174; ‘Narrative Structure in Medieval Italian Arthurian Romance.’ In The Arthur of the Italians, Regina Psaki and Gloria Allaire, eds. Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2014, 91-104; ‘Exempla and Historiography. Alberic of Trois-Fontaines’ reading of Caesarius’ Dialogus miraculorum.’ In La Persuasion cistercienne, M.A. Polo de Beaulieu, V. Smirnova, eds, Leiden: Brill, 2015, 143-159.

Recent published include the critical edition of Herbert of Torres’ Liber visionum et miraculorum Clarevallensium (Turnhout: Brepols, CCCM 227, 2017) in collaboration with Dom Giancarlo Zichi and Graziano Fois. He also translated, with Maura Favero, David Areford's book La nave e lo scheletro. Le stampe di Jacopo Rubieri alla Biblioteca Classense di Verona (Bologna: Bononia University Press, 2017). He is currently working on a monograph on early Cistercian exempla, tentatively called Between Literature and History: The Medieval Cistercian exemplum (12th -13th C.).

At Middlebury College Stefano has taught a variety of courses in Italian language and literature at all levels, including “La Divina Commedia di Dante” and surveys of Medieval and Modern Italian Literature. He has had the great pleasure to act as Interim Faculty Head for Cook Commons in 2011-2012 and of Brainerd Commons in 2014-2015. He regularly teaches “Introduction to World Literature” courses, and has been Director of the Comparative Literature Program and of the Linguistics Program.



Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

CMLT 0101 - Intro to World Literature      

Introduction to World Literature
This course is an introduction to the critical analysis of imaginative literature of the world, the dissemination of themes and myths, and the role of translation as the medium for reaching different cultures. Through the careful reading of selected classic texts from a range of Western and non-Western cultures, students will deepen their understanding and appreciation of the particular texts under consideration, while developing a critical vocabulary with which to discuss and write about these texts, both as unique artistic achievements of individual and empathetic imagination and as works affected by, but also transcending their historical periods. 3 hrs. lect./disc. CMP CW LIT

Spring 2018, Spring 2020

More Information »

CMLT 0500 - Independent Study      

Independent Study
Approval Required

Spring 2018

More Information »

CMLT 0700 - Senior Thesis      

Senior Thesis
A senior thesis is normally completed over two semesters. During Fall and Winter terms, or Winter and Spring terms, students will write a 35-page (article length) comparative essay, firmly situated in literary analysis. Students are responsible for identifying and arranging to work with their primary language and secondary language readers, and consulting with the program director before completing the CMLT Thesis Declaration form. (Approval required.)

Spring 2018, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Winter 2022, Spring 2022

More Information »

FYSE 1312 - Boccaccio's Decameron      

Bocaccio's Decameron
The Decameron by the Italian writer Giovanni Boccaccio is a collection of stories ranging from the tragic to the comic, from the holy to the profane. In this seminar we will read Boccaccio’s short stories (novelle), discuss critical studies, analyze in depth the relationship of each novella to the whole work, and study the
Decameron using a variety of theoretical approaches. We will also compare the
Decameron with other famous collections such as Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales and the Thousand and One Nights. CW EUR LIT

Fall 2019

More Information »

ITAL 0101 - Beginning Italian      

Beginning Italian
This course is an introduction to the Italian language that provides a foundation in both spoken and written Italian. Focus on the spoken language encourages rapid mastery of the basic structures and vocabulary of contemporary Italian. The exclusive use of Italian in dialogue situations and vocabulary building encourages the student to develop skills in a personalized context. Conversation and drill are stimulated and fostered through active reference to popular Italian music, authentic props, and slides of Italian everyday life and culture. Students are required to participate in the Italian table. 6 hrs. disc./perf.; 2 hrs. screen LNG

Fall 2017, Fall 2018, Fall 2019, Fall 2020

More Information »

ITAL 0102 - Beginning Italian      

Beginning Italian II
This course is a continuation of ITAL 0101, and emphasizes spoken and written Italian and the mastery of more complex grammatical structures and vocabulary. Students continue to work with conversation partners, but will also incorporate more specific cultural references in oral presentations and in written assignments. Students attend the Italian table and mandatory film screenings. (ITAL 0101 or equivalent) LNG WTR

Winter 2019, Winter 2021

More Information »

ITAL 0103 - Beginning Italian      

Beginning Italian III
This course emphasizes increased control and proficiency in the language through audiovisual, conversational, and drill methods. Italian life and culture continue to be revealed through the use of realia. Short reading selections on contemporary Italy and discussions enlarge the student's view of Italian life and culture. Students continue to participate in the Italian table. (ITAL 0102 or equivalent) 6 hrs. disc./perf.; 2 hrs. screen. LNG

Spring 2019, Spring 2021

More Information »

ITAL 0340 - Italian Landscapes      

Italian Landscapes: History, Culture, Literature, and Identity
What is paesaggio, and how similar/different is it from its English equivalent, Landscape? In this course we will study the concept and its relevance for the construction of an Italian identity. In particular, we will discuss the relations between paesaggio and environment, emotions, history, and literature. Through the reading of essays from a variety of scholarly approaches (anthropological, sociological, historical, literary), personal reflection, and group analysis, we will analyze the creation and the changing nature of the meaning and importance of paesaggio. Our focus will be Italy and its regions, with a comparative approach that will include Vermont and Middlebury. 3 hrs. sem CMP EUR

Spring 2019

More Information »

ITAL 0354 - Italian Identity      

Italian Identity through History, Literature, and Music
What does it mean to be “Italian”? What is “campanilismo”? What role do languages and dialects play, and how important is music, from opera to contemporary songs, in the construction of Italian identity? This course acquaints students with the major 19th to 21st century debates on Italy and Italian iscdentity, and develops students' linguistic, critical, and analytical skills. Readings will introduce literary genres within their historical framework. Special emphasis will be placed on the skills of both Academic and Public Writing, also focusing on rewriting, editing, and peer reviewing. (ITAL 0252 or equivalent, taught in Italian) 3 hrs. lect./disc., 2 hrs. screen. CW EUR LIT

Fall 2017, Fall 2020

More Information »

ITAL 0380 - CSPW: Italy and Migrants      

Calderwood Seminar in Public Writing: Italy and Migrants
International migration is a major contemporary phenomenon for many countries, including Italy. We will read, analyze, and write effectively about migrants' stories, struggles, related issues for host countries, and how migrants' lives are portrayed in various media. The goals of this Calderwood Seminar are to learn about migration through the lenses of Italy, and to improve student writing. We will pay particular attention to writing effectively and for a general audience, through peer-writing sessions and group discussions. Class meetings are once a week, but students will be required to interact regularly outside of class, providing in-depth feedback to each other's essays. (ITAL 0252 or by approval) 3 hrs. sem. CW EUR LNG

Fall 2018, Spring 2020

More Information »

ITAL 0459 - Modern Italian Lit and Culture      

Modern Italian Literature and Culture
This course will consider the works of Italian twentieth-century novelists and will explore the authors' narrative techniques within a larger discussion of the social context that their works reflect and interpret. Focusing on novels by Natalia Ginzburg, Carlo Levi, Carlo Collodi, Italo Calvino, we will discuss issues related to gender roles, family, education, class, and politics. Special attention will be devoted to each author's approach to the art of storytelling. Films inspired by some of the novels will supplement the readings. (ITAL 0355 or equivalent) 3 hrs. disc. EUR LIT

Fall 2017

More Information »

ITAL 0490 - Dante In Italian      

Dante in Italian
This course concentrates on a close reading of the whole of Dante's Inferno. Students will learn about the historical and literary context of the work, read excerpts from the Purgatorio and the Paradiso, get acquainted with the long tradition of Dante commentaries, and contribute twice a week to an on-line discussion on the weekly readings. After two short papers that will analyze specific aspects of a canto, students will prepare as a final project a Lectura Dantis: a detailed analysis of a canto of the Inferno that will include critical material. (ITAL 0355 or equivalent) 3 hrs. disc. EUR LIT

Spring 2018

More Information »

ITAL 0550 - Independent Study      

Independent Study
Italian faculty as a group will consider and approve requests by qualified juniors and seniors to engage in independent work. Students must submit a prospectus that includes a bibliography of no less than five sources. Interested students should contact members of the Italian faculty before the end of the preceding term to discuss their project and to see if they are available to direct the Independent Study. Students must submit a prospectus with the department chair by the end of the first week of classesfor fall and spring term approvals, by the end the last week of fall semesterfor winter term approvals. Prior to submission, sufficient advance consultation with project directors is required.Junior students are strongly encouraged to consider independent study as preparation for senior honors thesis work.

Fall 2017, Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022

More Information »

ITAL 0755 - Senior Honors      

Students majoring in Italian must complete an independent senior project. Italian faculty as a group will consider and approve the proposals, which should be submitted before the last week of the preceding semester. The senior project will be advised by one member of the Italian department, but will be presented to the whole department. Italian honors will be awarded to eligible students depending on the final grade. (Staff)

Winter 2018, Spring 2018, Fall 2018, Winter 2019, Spring 2019, Fall 2019, Winter 2020, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, Winter 2021, Spring 2021, Fall 2021, Winter 2022

More Information »

Department of Italian

Voter Hall
381 College Street
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753