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Art, History & Politics

The Paduan 9/11 Memorial

and the Fosse ardeatine in Rome

December 5, 2023
6:30 pm

Presented in collaboration with
NYU Department of Italian Studies

The Paduan 9/11 Memorial and the
Fosse ardeatine in Rome

A lecture by
Armando Maggi
Arthur and Joann Rasmussen Professor of Western Civilization
The University of Chicago


The topic of this talk focuses on the notion of ruins. The main theme of the first part is not 9/11 per se, but rather how the Paduan memorial reflects the way in which Italians have interpreted and appropriated this event. We will read contemporary Italian culture through this neglected memorial in Padua. Shifting to a different form of memorial, the second part of the talk centers on the Fosse ardeatine in Rome and examines how the notion of ruins acquires a significantly different connotation in this memorial that is quickly becoming obsolete.

Armando Maggi is the Arthur and Joan Rasmussen Professor of Western Civilization at the University of Chicago (department of romance languages and literatures). He is the author of several volumes and essays on Renaissance, Baroque, and modern culture. Some of his books are Satan’s Rhetoric: A Study of Renaissance Demonology (2001), In the Company of Demons: Unnatural Beings, Love, and Identity in the Italian Renaissance (2006), Petrarch: A Critical Guide to the Complete Works (2008), The Resurrection of the Body: Pier Paolo Pasolini from Saint Paul to Sade (2009), Preserving the Spell: Giovan Battista Basile’s The Tale of Tales and Its Afterlife in the Fairy-tale Tradition (2015). His most recent works are the first edition of Lucrezia Marinella’s poem Amore innamorato et impazzato (2023) and the essays: “The Nostalgia for Il Cortigiano: Francisco Rodrigues Lobo’s Corte na aldeia e noites de inverno (1612) and the Crisis of the Portuguese Court” in Dedalus: Revista portuguesa de literature comparada; “The Fairy Tale as Waste Product: Bachelard, Benjamin, Agamben and the Anamnesis of Childhood” in Favola & Fiaba; “Human Agency, Fate, and Signaturae in Early-Modern Metoposcopy” in Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies.