Italy » Academic Program
The Sicily summer program offers a unique opportunity to begin or continue your Italian language study, while learning about the ancient and modern cultures of Italy. For this intensive language program, Italian classes focus on the areas of grammar, writing, oral skills, reading and culture. There will be daily opportunities to use Italian in real-life situations, such as shopping at the market or attending a soccer game.
Language learning is paired with two thematic classes, which immerse students in the heritage of Sicily, and the life of its people in the modern era. These classes have been specially developed to maximize exposure to all that Sicily has to offer, and to help students understand this rich and complex culture.
The thematic classes focus on two areas:
Sicily: Ancient Crossroads: From prehistory to the present day, explorers, traders, immigrants, and soldiers have criss-crossed the Mediterranean in search of a new homeland, wealth and military power and advantage. Sicily, with its expanse of arable land and wealth in metals, was a strategic lynchpin in ancient society. We tend to think of the continents of Europe, Africa and Asia as distinct from one another, separated by geography and a dividing body of water; in reality, the sea between them served to connect them in antiquity, as it does today. Ninety miles separates Cap Bon, the northernmost point in Tunisia (location of ancient Carthage) from the southernmost point in Sicily. That’s less than the distance from Eugene to Portland, Oregon. Through studying ancient Sicily and the remains of Phoenician and Roman Carthage in Tunisia, students will be introduced to many of the key civilizations of the ancient world, most importantly through the tombs, temples, and cities they left behind. This course will also help students appreciate the interplay of ancient societies, which in turn will set the stage for an understanding of the interaction of North Africa and Sicily today.
Anthropology of Contemporary Italy: Mediterranean Frontiers
The focus of this course is the investigation of Italy through the wide-angle lens of social anthropology, and so the readings have been selected to highlight the major themes dominating the study of Italian everyday culture, such as the family and demographic decline, regional cuisines, the "Southern Question," the impact of neoliberalism, political corruption, the mafia, identity issues, linguistic pluralism, and the place of Italy within Europe and the Mediterranean world. The largest section will be devoted to migration, starting with the historical, political and socio-economic forces which originally led to massive outmigration from the nation, and which then led to Italy becoming a net importer of migrants. We will be looking at who migrates to Italy (paying closest attention to migration to Sicily), to where, and why, and how they get there, and what they typically do once they’ve arrived. We will also be investigating who claims the right to speak for migrants or about them and on what basis. We will do all of this by means of lectures, of course, but also by means of discussions of fictionalized narratives of migration; of case studies of migrants; of personal stories of migration; by carrying out personal observations, holding interviews, and analyzing films.
Each participant should consult with his or her campus contact to determine how the language and thematic credits will integrate with the home campus curriculum requirements before departure.
Registration and Credits
Students participating in this program will be registered at their home university in Oregon and will receive 20 upper-division home campus credits for the courses in the program. Students are advised to consult with their academic advisor about their plans to study in the Sicily Summer program. Actual courses and credits are applied after completion of the program.
The program is planned to run from July 1 – August 31, 2013. A final schedule will be provided after the application deadline in March.
Click on the name of your University for contact information.
Eastern Oregon University
Inlow Hall 109E
La Grande, OR 97850
Oregon Institute of Technology
Klamath Falls, OR 97601
(541) 885- 1847
Oregon State University*
2900 SW Jefferson Way firstname.lastname@example.org
Portland State University
International Affairs, East Hall 101
632 SW Hall
Portland, OR 97207 email@example.com
Southern Oregon University
Stevenson Union 321
Ashland, OR 97520
University of Oregon
Western Oregon University
Michele V. Price
Study Abroad &
Monmouth, OR 97361
* Also serves as the program Coordinator/Assistant.