Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo / Portale Web di Ateneo


The image of Italy in Thomas Mann (course borrowed from German Culture)
L'immagine dell'Italia in Thomas Mann (corso mutuato da Cultura tedesca)

A.Y. Credits
2015/2016 8
Lecturer Email Office hours for students
Luca Renzi

Assigned to the Degree Course

Foreign languages and culture (L-11)
Curriculum: LIN-OC
Date Time Classroom / Location

Learning Objectives

The course is aimed at acquiring, through a literary-historical and cultural overview about Germany since 1900 - initially offered by the analysis of an epochal novel - of fundamentals on German culture of the last two centuries, especially from a constrastive and intercultural perspective as from Italian culture.


In a first part, Th. Mann's novel Death in Venice will be critically analyzed as well as aspects of the culture of Germany in 20th century.

Students attending this course of German Literature I and II, borrowed from German Culture, will also benefit from the supplementary support course held by Dr. Andrea Benedetti, entitled "Image of Italy in the works of Thomas Mann from 1914 to 1930 ", on the following books excerpts:

Gedanken im Kriege (1914)

Betrachtungen eines Unpolitischen (1918)

Mario und der Zauberer (1930)

and whose full program is posted on the bulletin board next to the office of German.

Moreover, to the students attending this course will be offered the opportunity, through some replacement texts, to explore and deepen the issues related to the analysis of Th. Mann's novel and the synonymous movie by L. Visconti.

Learning Achievements (Dublin Descriptors)

Ability to understand and critically analyze aspects and historical events, placing them within a cultural framework of the whole of historical development and social repercussions.

Teaching Material

The teaching material prepared by the lecturer in addition to recommended textbooks (such as for instance slides, lecture notes, exercises, bibliography) and communications from the lecturer specific to the course can be found inside the Moodle platform › blended.uniurb.it

Supporting Activities

Handouts and online database prepared by the teacher on appropriate links.
The screening of L. Visconti's Death in Venice is planned.

Teaching, Attendance, Course Books and Assessment


Lectures and seminars.


Frequency of at least two-thirds of lessons.

Course books

Th. Mann, La morte a Venezia, Torino, Einaudi, 2006 or any other edition


Students attending the course German Literature I and II borrowed from German Culture, may use the following texts to replace one or two of the previous:

E. Shookman, Thomas Mann's Death in Venice. A Reference Guide. Westport/London, 2004

E. Spedicato, Literatur auf der Leinwand am Beispiel von Luchino Viscontis „Morte a Venezia". Würzburg, Königshausen&Neumann, 2008

Attending students can make use of a term paper, to be undertaken in groups, according to the criteria described by the teacher, which will integrate the final grade. Non-attending students are required to follow the examination program as provided by the handbook.


The texts (excerpts) of the supplementary course for students of German Literature I and II, by Dr. Benedetti, are as follows:

Gedanken im Kriege

German version: Mann, Thomas: "Essays 2: 1914-1926", hrsg. H. von Kurzke in Id .: Grosse Kommentierte Frankfurter Ausgabe: Werke, Briefe, Tagebücher, Bd.15.1, Fischer, Frankfurt a. M., 2002, pp. 27-46.

Italian version: “Pensieri di guerra”, in Id.: “Scritti storici e politici”, vol. XI, a cura di L. Mazzucchetti, Mondadori, Milano, 1957, pp. 33-52.

Betrachtungen eines Unpolitischen

German version: Mann, Thomas: Betrachtungen eines Unpolitischen, hrsg. H. von Kurzke in Id.:Grosse Kommentierte Frankfurter Ausgabe: Werke, Briefe, Tagebücher, Bd. 13.1, Fischer, Frankfurt a. M., 2009.

Italian version:
Mann, Thomas: Considerazioni di un impolitico, a cura di M. Marianelli e M. Ingenmey, Adelphi, Milano, 1997.

Mario und der Zauberer

German version: Mann, Thomas: "Mario und der Zauberer", in Id .: Späte Erzählungen, Fischer, Frankfurt a. M., 19962, pp. 188-242.

Italian version:  Mann, Thomas: “Mario e il mago”, in Id.: Romanzi brevi, a cura di R. Fertonani, Mondadori, Milano, 1984, pp. 375-434.

(They also will replace two of the three texts of the Culture program).


Oral examination. Evaluated term papers.

Disability and Specific Learning Disorders (SLD)

Students who have registered their disability certification or SLD certification with the Inclusion and Right to Study Office can request to use conceptual maps (for keywords) during exams.

To this end, it is necessary to send the maps, two weeks before the exam date, to the course instructor, who will verify their compliance with the university guidelines and may request modifications.

« back Last update: 26/02/2016

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