Photo of the crowd for Jhumpa Lahiri's visit to campus.


The 2023-24 calendar of events and activities


The Fall will be devoted to cinema in two very different yet equally enriching forms able to shed light on aspects of Italian culture inside and outside the country. The film A Girl Returned (L’arminuta, 2021), adapted from the novel of the same title by Donatella Di Pietrantonio, will be screened in the presence of the director Giuseppe Bonito, who will also separately meet students of an Honors class focusing on the concept and experience of adoption. After Thanksgiving, director Valerio Ciriaci and cinematographer Isaak J. Liptzin will present their documentary Stonebreakers about the symbolic and material meaning of monuments at a time of conflicting perspectives on their relevance for societies.

Support for extra-curricular activities linked to courses offered on campus is part of the mission of the Inserra: this fall, students of the ITAL 345 Special Topics Class, “From Focaccia to Farinata: Italian Food Culture” taught by Dr. Gina Miele will take a cooking workshop with Chef Karan Fischer at the Montclair Culinary Academy. 

Stay tuned for more events for the Spring!

A new research project, launched in the Summer of 2023, will be presented as part of the Undergraduate Research Program: “The Colonial Revival Architectural Style from Spain to Montclair State University: Imperial Routes and Transnational Affinities” is a collaboration between Dr. Teresa Fiore (Inserra Chair in Italian and Italian American Studies, WLC Dept.) and Mar Arroyo Cabrera (a student from the Dominican Republic, majoring in Communication and Media Studies, and minoring in French) with the key participation of Isaak J. Liptzin from Awen Film Production, a company based in New York. The project is part of Memoria presente (see below).

Two research projects that involve students on and off campus continue to unfold: “Food, Hunger, Migration and the American Myth in Sicily at the Time of the WWII Allied Landingand Memoria presente: The Common Spanish Legacy in Italian and Latin American Cultures,” a digital archive linked to the course Italian for Spanish speakers developed in response to the federal designation of Montclair State University as a Hispanic Serving Institution.

Projects and programs count on the constant support of the generous Inserra family, which allows for constant expansion and innovation. The approach offered by the Inserra Chair is a holistic one that strives for organically bringing together research initiatives, teaching projects, and cultural activities in the service of several communities both on and off campus in the belief that the promotion of Italian and Italian American culture happens in multi-layered ways, with several stakeholders involved, and in a sustained way over time. Its efforts continue to be particularly focused on a transnational vision of Italy able to make an impact on the curricular offerings on campus, i.e. Italian major and minor as well as the Language Business Culture combined major.

Thank you for supporting this vision with your participation and with the circulation of this information. We look forward to seeing you at these events (in person or on line)!