Speroni Chair, Fall 2019
Office Hours: T 2-3pm, W 11am-12pm, by appointment
Roberta Morosini is Professor of Romance Languages & Literatures at Wake Forest University and the 2019-2020 Charles Speroni Endowed Chair at the Department of Italian at UCLA. She has a Ph.D. from McGill University in Italian Literature, with a specialization in Italian Medieval Literature and Culture. She also has an Italian Laurea in European Languages and Literatures from the University “Federico II” of Naples and a French D.E.A. (Diplôme d’Etudes Approfondies) in Littératures françaises from the Université de Rennes II, as well as a Diploma from the School of Criticism and Theory, Cornell University. She has studied Dante and linguistics at the University of Reading, UK. A recipient of the Luigi De Lise Culture Award, Dr. Morosini has been a Fellow at The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies, Villa I Tatti, at the NEH Mediterranean Summer Institute, at the Bogliasco Foundation, and at the Cini Foundation’s Centro Studi di Civiltà Italiana Vittore Branca.
Dr. Morosini’s research interests lie in Medieval and Renaissance Italian Culture and Literature. These include studies of the Mediterranean, metaliterary and geocritical studies, and spatial and cartographic writings from Dante to Renaissance island books. Part of her pan-Mediterranean research evolve around the study of Christian-Muslim Relations and mis-representations of Muhammad the Prophet of Islam. In her approach to the sea as a network of knowledge and a space of crossings of people as well as stories, she blends scholarship in the visual arts with transcultural investigations of slavery, mobility, and identity. Dr. Morosini is currently working on the English edition of her Dante, Il Profeta and Il Libro (Rome: 2018) and completing a book on travelling tales of the Italian Alexander for AUP.
Her recent books include Il mare salato. Il Mediterraneo di Dante, Petrarca e Boccaccio, Rome: Viella, 2019, Paolino Veneto. Storico, Narratore e Geografo, eds. with M. Ciccuto, Rome: 2019, Dante, il Profeta e il Libro. La leggenda del toro dalla Commedia a Filippino Lippi, tra sussurri di colomba ed echi di Bisanzio, Rome: 2018, and Boccaccio geografo. Un viaggio nel Mediterraneo, tra le città, i giardini, e il “mondo” di G. Boccaccio.
She has co-edited volumes, and written numerous articles and more recently: Invenzioni “letterarie” dell’Islam: biografie leggendarie di Maometto da Dante a Boccaccio, Boccaccio’s Cartography of Poetry , or the Geocritical Navigation of the Genealogy of the Pagan Gods, and What a Difference a Sea Makes in The Decameron.
Dr. Morosini is the founder and director of the book series Mediterranean Circularities for L’«Erma» di Bretschneider publisher. She is on the editorial committees of several specialized journal (Le Tre Corone, Bibliotheca Dantesca, Rivista internazionale di ricerche dantesche…). She is on the advisory boards of “Ente Nazionale Giovanni Boccaccio” and the Mediterranean Seminar.org. She has served twice as Vice President of the American Boccaccio Association and once as President of the executive committee of the Division of Medieval and Renaissance Italian Literature of the MLA.