I am a scholar of twentieth-century and contemporary Italian cinema, literature, and culture. I studied Russian and English literatures at the Catholic University of Milan, where I obtained my laurea, and completed my MA and PhD in Italian at the University of Pennsylvania. My research interests include cinematic and literary interpretations of history, visual and inter-art studies, women's and gender studies and theory, motherhood studies, Mediterranean studies, as well as the literature and cinema of migration in Italy. My current research project is a book-length study of contemporary Italian migration cinema, which I explore from a gendered perspective. I have recently served as co-editor of Journal of Italian Cinema and Media Studies 7.2 (2019) and guest editor for the journal gender/sexuality/Italy 5 (2018). Together with Maria Elena D'Amelio, I co-edited the volume Italian Motherhood on Screen (Palgrave 2017). My first book, Carlo Levi's Visual Poetics: The Painter as Writer, was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2012. I have also published numerous articles and book chapters on Italian cinema and twentieth-century Italian literature and critical theory. In 2011-2012, I was a Mellon Regional Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania's Penn Humanities Forum on "Adaptations."
In the Fall of 2014 I returned to Penn as a Visiting Scholar, offering a seminar on the representation of WWI in Italian literature, cinema, and the arts. At Franklin & Marshall, I teach all levels of Italian language and have created many new courses in Italian cinema and literature, including "Italian Contemporary Cinema," "Italy and the Mediterranean," "Italian literature and the visual arts," and "Italian Urban Cultures." More recently, I have designed and coordinated a multi-instructor course on "Forced Migration" for the program in International Studies, and contributed to "Bodies, Technologies, and Social Media," an introduction to the digital humanities. For the Connections curriculum, I developed a CNX2 seminar, "Mediterranean Migrations."
At F&M, I have served as the Chair of the Italian Studies department and the program in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, and contribute to the program in Comparative Literary Studies. I have also co-chaired the Language Studies Council. I am member of the F&M Forced Migration working group and, in 2018-2019, I directed the Faculty Humanities Research Colloquium on "Environments."
Together with Professor Scott Lerner, I created and have been teaching regularly in the F&M in Italy Summer Program.
BOOKS AND EDITED VOLUMES
Italian Motherhood on Screen. Edited with Maria Elena D'Amelio. New York and London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017.
Journal of Italian Cinema and Media Studies 7.2 (2019). Special Issue on "Italian Cinema in the Present Tense: New Narrative Practices from Adaptation to Transmedia and Transnational Cinema" in honor of Millicent Marcus. Edited with Nicoletta Marini-Maio and Elena Past.
"Reproduction, Fertility, and Parenthood: The Italian Case." Themed section of the peer-reviewed open-access journal gender/sexuality/Italy 5 (2018). Edited with Nicoletta Marini Maio.
JOURNAL ARTICLES AND BOOK CHAPTERS
"Archives of Migrant Motherhood: Andrea Segre’s 'Ibi'." EuropeNow 30 (October 2019).
"Millicent Marcus and the Ethics of Adaptation." Editorial (co-authored with Nicoletta Marini-Maio and Elena Past). Journal of Italian Cinema and Media Studies 7.2 (2019): 179-189.
"Cybermoms and Postfeminism in Italian Web Series." gender/sexuality/Italy 5 (2018): 142-159.
"Liquid Maternity in Italian Migration Cinema," Italian Motherhood on Screen. Eds. Maria Elena D'Amelio and Giovanna Faleschini Lerner. New York and London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017. 211-232.
"Introduction" (co-authored with Maria Elena D'Amelio), Italian Motherhood on Screen. Eds. Maria Elena D'Amelio and Giovanna Faleschini Lerner. New York and London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017. 1-18.
“Sogno, memoria e storia: la Roma di Carlo Levi e di Federico Fellini.” Poetiche. Rivista di letteratura italiana 17.1 (2015): 107-139.
“Il fascino dell'altra: Le straniere nel cinema italiano.” Storie in divenire: le donne nel cinema italiano. Eds. Lucia Cardone and Cristina Jandelli. Special issue of Quaderni del CSCI 11 (2015): 204-209.
“Forme di ospitalità urbana nel cinema delle donne: Marina Spada, Anna Bernasconi e Giulia Ciniselli,” Filmare il femminismo. Studi sulle donne nel cinema e nei media. Eds. Lucia Cardone and Sara Filippelli. Pisa: ETS, 2015. 141-150.
"Contemporaneità and Ecological Thinking in Carlo Levi's Writing." Thinking Italian Animals: Human and Posthuman in Modern Italian Fiction and Film. Eds. Elena Past and Deborah Amberson. New York and London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014. 197-214.
"Ksenia Rappoport and Transnational Stardom in Contemporary Cinema." Journal of Italian Media and Cinema Studies 1.1 (2013): 7-20.
“From the Other Side of the Mediterranean: Hospitality in Italian Migration Cinema.” California Italian Studies 1.1 (2010): 294-9.
"Il cinema come strumento d'incontro: Vittorio Moroni e il nuovo documentario italiano." Zoom "d'oltreoceano": istantanee sui registi italiani e sull'Italia. Eds. Simone Dubrovic and Daniela De Pau. Manziana: Vecchiarelli, 2010. 319-344.
“Ending ‘ventriloquistic’ discourses and creating a dialogue of difference: Lettere dal Sahara and Le ferie di Licu.” From Terrone to Extra-Comunitario: The New Racism in Contemporary Italian Cinema. Ed. Grace Russo Bullaro. Leicester, UK: Troubador Publishing (Italian Studies Series), 2010. 366-390.
“Francesco Rosi’s Cristo si è fermato a Eboli: Toward a Cinema of Painting.” Italica 86.2 (2009): 272-292.
“Carlo Levi’s L’orologio: A Revolution in Words and Images.” Creative Interventions: The Role of the Intellectual in Contemporary Italian Culture. Eds. Eugenio Bolongaro, Rita Gagliano, and Mark Epstein. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2009. 63-91.
“Carlo Levi’s New Humanism.” Annali d’italianistica 26 (2008): 283-97.
“Visconti’s Senso: The Art of History.” Forum Italicum 41.2 (2007): 342-58.
“La stanza degli orologi: Storia e memoria in Rinascimento privato di Maria Bellonci.” Narrare la storia. Dal documento al racconto. Ed. Fondazione Bellonci. Milan: Mondadori, 2006. 113-124.
"Speaking of collaboration, friendship and the future of Italian film studies: An interview with Millicent Marcus" (co-authored with Elena Past and Nicoletta Marini-Maio). Journal of Italian Cinema and Media Studies 7.2 (2019): 191-198.
"L’immagine della migrazione." Valeria G. Castelli in conversazione con Nicolò De Giorgis, Giovanna Faleschini Lerner e Alessandro Triulzi. FlashArt 337 (February - March 2018).
“Wilma Labate.” Storie in divenire: le donne nel cinema italiano. Eds. Lucia Cardone and Cristina Jandelli. Special issue of Quaderni del CSCI 11 (2015): 294-95.
“Reading Carlo Levi Beyond Eboli: Joseph Farrell’s The Voices of Carlo Levi and Levi’s Fear of Freedom.” Forum Italicum 42.2 (Fall 2008): 416-21.
Calabretta-Sajder, Ryan. Divergenze in celluloide. Colore, migrazione e identità nei film gay di Ferzan Özpetek. Milano: Mimesis, 2016. Pp. 246. Annali d'italianistica 35 (2017): 521-24.
Marini, Alessandro. Bertolucci: Il cinema, la letteratura, il caso Prima della Rivoluzione. Alessandria: Falsopiano, 2012. Pp. 267. Annali d’italianistica 32 (2014): 690-692.
De Franceschi, Leonardo, ed. L’Africa in Italia. Per una controstoria postcoloniale del cinema italiano. Roma: Aracne, 2013. Pp. 512. Quaderni del CSCI 9 (2013): 313.
Bartalesi-Graf, Daniela. Voci dal sud: A journey to Southern Italy with Carlo Levi and his Christ stopped at Eboli. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2011. Pp. 419. Annali d’italianistica 29 (2011): 545-547.
Binetti, Vincenzo. Città nomadi: Esodo e autonomia nella metropoli contemporanea. Verona: Ombre corte, 2008. Pp. 140. Annali d’italianistica 28 (2010): 582-584.
Bruck, Edith. Letter to My Mother. Ed. Gabriella Romani. Trans. Brenda Webster. New York: The Modern Language Association of America, 2006. Pp. 250. Forum Italicum 41.2 (Fall 2007): 536-7.
"The Rohrwacher Brand: Women's Cinema, Celebrity, and Slowness." XXV International Conference of Film Studies, Roma Tre University, Rome, November 22, 2019.
“Maternal Bodies, Maternal Gazes: The Case of Andrea Segre’s Ibi.” Mobile Bodies: The Migrant Subject in Film and Media. Panel at the JICMS International Conference, Global Intersections and Artistic Interconnections: Italian Cinema and Media Across Times and Spaces, Rome, June 15, 2019.
"Migrant Stories between the Archive and the Garbage Dump in the Mediterranean." "Transnational Narratives on Migration and Exile" International Conference, University of Bergen, Norway, June 4, 2019.
“Afterlives: Migrant Trash in the Mediterranean.” Afterlives. Panel at the 2019 AAIS Conference, Wake Forest University, March 16, 2019.
"Transmedia Approaches to Postfeminist Motherhood: Una mamma imperfetta, Bad Moms, and Consuming Mothers." Media Tactics and Engagement. NECS 2018 Conference. Amsterdam and Utrecht, The Netherlands, June 27-29, 2018.
"Cyber-Moms and Postfeminism in Italian Web Series." Reproduction and Fertility in Film and Media: Italy in the Mediterranean. Panel at the MLA Annual Convention, New York, NY, January 5, 2018.
"Liquid Maternity in Italian Migration Cinema," AAIS/CSIS International Conference, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, April 22, 2017.
"Migrant bodies, migrant voices in Mediterranea and Là bas. Educazione criminale," AATI International Conference, Universities of Naples "Federico II" and "L'Orientale," June 25, 2016.
“Laughing With a Difference: Italian Film Comedy and Immigration,” AAIS XXXV Annual Conference, University of Colorado at Boulder, March 28, 2015.
“Spazi urbani di ospitalità nel cinema delle donne,” FASCinA 2nd Annual International Conference, University of Sassari, October 23, 2014.
"Maternity Blues: Mothers as Monsters, Mothers as Victims." NEMLA XLV Annual Conference, Harrisburg, PA, April 4, 2014.
“Landscapes of Alienation in Contemporary Italian Cinema,” Society for Cinema and Media Studies Annual Conference, Seattle, WA, March 19, 2014.
“Specters of the Maternal in Italian Women’s Cinema,” AAIS XXXIII Annual Conference, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR, April 11, 2013.
"Ksenia Rappoport and Transnational Stardom in Contemporary Cinema,” AAIS XXXII Annual Conference, College of Charleston, Charleston, SC, May 3, 2012.
“Spaces of Adaptation in Italian Documentary Filmmaking,” Penn Humanities Forum “Adaptations” Faculty Seminar, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, October 18, 2011.
"Mediterranean Mirrors: Otherness and Selfhood in Mohsen Melliti's Io, l'altro." "The Mediterranean in Italian Culture" international conference. University of Venice and University of Udine, May 3-4, 2010.
"Inhospitable Landscapes: Il vento fa il suo giro e La giusta distanza." AAIS XXX Annual Conference, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, April 22-25, 2010.
“Landscapes of Alienation in Contemporary Italian Cinema.” 41st NeMLA Annual Conference, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, April 10, 2010.
"The Other as Mirror in Melliti’s Io, l’altro.” XXIX AAIS Annual Conference, St John’s College, New York, May 9, 2009.
“Resisting Modernity in the Mediterranean: Carlo Levi’s Christ Stopped at Eboli.” X Modernist Studies Association Annual Conference, Vanderbilt University, November 16, 2008.
“Mediterranean Crossings in Contemporary Italian Cinema.” “Mediterranean Journeys: From Odysseus to Migrant Workers,” Central Pennsylvania Consortium Mediterranean Studies Colloquium, Franklin & Marshall College, April 12, 2008.
INVITED LECTURES and WORKSHOPS
"Ghosts of the Past, Fears of the Present." Center for the Arts and Humanities, Colby College, November 12, 2018.
"Neorealism from the Movie Theatre to Netflix." Cinema and Culture: An Italian Perspective. Chapman University, Orange, CA, April 7, 2018.
“Screening the New Face of Italy.” Dickinson College, March 24, 2015.
“Sogno, memoria e storia: la Roma di Carlo Levi e di Federico Fellini.” University of Bologna, Department of Italian Studies and Classical Philology, October 30, 2014.
“Il cinema della migrazione: dimensioni del multiculturalismo italiano.” St. Joseph’s University, Pedagogical Seminar, April 20, 2013.
“Pride and prejudice in Italian multicultural society: Carlo Mazzacurati’s film La giusta distanza.” Seton Hall University, Charles and Joan Alberto Italian Studies Institute, December 1, 2009.
Elementary italian I (ITA 101)
Elementary Italian II (ITA 102)
Intermediate Italian I (ITA 201)
Intermediate Italian II (ITA 202)
Intensive Intermediate Italian (ITA 275)
Cultural and Literary Studies Courses (300- and 400-level)
Women and Gender in Modern Italian Literature and Cinema
Italian Literature and the Visual Arts
Italy and the Mediterranean
Contemporary Italian Fiction
Intro to Italian Literary Studies
Film Studies Courses
Italian Cinema and the Arts
History of Italian Film
Interdisciplinary and Collaborative Courses
Bodies, Technologies, and Social Media (Intro to the Digital Humanities), co-taught with Alexis Castor, Alison Kibler, Brianna Gormly
Forced Migration Seminar
General Education Courses
Mediterranean Migrations (Connections Curriculum)