Six courses are required for the minor.  Three are required core courses; the remaining three are electives chosen by the student in consultation with the program coordinator.  At least one of the six must be at the 300 level or above; the others may be at any level.

Several courses have both 200 and 300 numbers. Students enrolling in  courses at the 300 level, to meet the requirement of the minor, must undertake additional work (more reading and/or writing; supplemental presentations) beyond that of students enrolling at the 200 level.

Every student’s selection of courses is specific to his or her particular interests in Italian history and culture.  As a result, prospective enrollees should consult early and frequently with the program coordinator to ensure that their course selection has appropriate coherence.

Required core courses (three):

One in Art

Art 223

Italian Renaissance Art
A study of the art and architecture of Florence, Rome, Siena, and environs from the late thirteenth to the late fifteenth centuries. The works are analyzed in terms of style, technique, function, and patronage.

Fall semester, alternate years



Art 226

Age of Michelangelo
A study of sixteenth-century painting, sculpture, and architecture, focusing on the most transcendent artists of the age: Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and Titian.


One in History or Literature

CL 101

Survey of European Literature I
Study of the most significant figures and their works in European literary history, exclusive of English. The course aims to acquaint students with the classics in the literatures of Greece, Rome, Italy, Spain, France, Germany, Russia, and other countries in English translation. No knowledge of foreign languages required. Open to all students. Lecture.


History 222

Reformation to Revolution: Early Modern Europe
During the early modern period, c. 1500-1800, European exploration and colonization transformed the ecology of planet Earth and created a new global economy. Religious wars and economic revolutions with Europe, meanwhile, changed the lives of people across the social hierarchy. Through class discussion and two research papers, students will closely analyze a range of primary sources in order to reveal how these developments created or ameliorated inequalities within and outside of Europe.


One in Music

MUS 260/360

Italian Music and Italian Identity
In this course, we shall concentrate specifically on understanding Italian music during its “Golden Age” (1300-1900): the six centuries from the Middle Ages (the time of Dante) through the period of the “great tradition” of nineteenth-century Italian opera. We shall simultaneously consider the larger question of what constitutes a national music. In addition, Italians’ music has been deployed at various times in their history to create a more local (regional or dynastic-familial) political and cultural identity, and the course will examine such uses of music as well.


Elective courses

At least one elective must be at the 300-level. Electives are selected in consultation with the program coordinator.

See a listing of elective courses.