The formation and consolidation of a centralized Italian state—known as the Risorgimento— occurred relatively late in the history of European nation-state formation. In this course, we will examine the rise of Italian nationalism during the Napoleonic invasions of the 1790s to the proclamation of Rome as the Italian capital in 1871. From there, we will turn to an in-depth analysis of the cultural, social, and political legacies of the process of unification. From this perspective, we will explore issues of regionalism and national identity in Italy’s position abroad including Italian imperial expansion and Italy’s role in World War I and World War II. Finally, we will ask how legacies of Allied and Nazi invasions persist in post-War Italy.
This course includes a three-day academic excursion to another Italian city. The exact location will be announced in the course schedule.