Internationally acclaimed Italian novelist to speak at URI

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KINGSTON, R.I., Feb. 15, 2013 — Dacia Maraini, a world-renowned author, journalist, playwright, and women’s studies scholar, is coming to the University of Rhode Island later this month to talk about her craft.

A prolific writer and well-known feminist, Maraini will give two talks and make other appearances as part of the University’s Distinguished International Visiting Scholar program. All events are free and open to the public.

* “From Convent to Brothel: Women’s Writers,” at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 27, in the Lippitt Hall auditorium. Maraini will talk about female writers from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance.

* Public Talk: “Why Do I Write?” at 5:30 p.m., March 4, in the Lippitt Hall auditorium. Maraini will talk about her years as a writer.

* Maraini will also participate in the productions, in English, of her plays Per Giulia, Per proteggerti meglio, and Mi chiamo Antonino Calderone, at 6 p.m., on March 5, in the Agnes G. Doody Auditorium of Swan Hall.

* A panel discussion will be held at 4:30 p.m. March 1 in the Swan Hall auditorium to celebrate International Women’s Day. URI President David M. Dooley and Provost Donald H. DeHayes are expected to make opening remarks. Panelists will include professors from Princeton, Harvard, Yale and other colleges and universities.

“It’s a great privilege to have Dacia Maraini here at URI,” says Michelangelo La Luna, associate professor of Italian at URI. “She is one of the finest Italian women writers today. ‘’

Maraini has won Campiello and Strega prizes, the most prestigious Italian literature awards. Her books are translated in 22 countries and some of her bestsellers, such as Storia di Piera, L’età del malessere, La lunga vita di Marianna Ucria, Voci and Memoria di una ladra, were turned into successful movies.

Throughout her life, Maraini has fought for women’s rights – the main topic of her research and literary work. Maraini has also profiled numerous notable women in history.

The talks are sponsored by the Provost’s Office in collaboration with the Office of the President, the Dean of Arts and Sciences, the Harrington School of Communication and Media, and the Departments of Languages, English, Gender and Women’s Studies, Theatre and Communication Studies.

For more information, please e-mail La Luna at or call him at 401-874-5968.

The cultural activities are included in the 2013 celebration of “The Year of Italian Culture in the United States.” For details, please visit

Pictured above: Michelangelo La Luna, an Italian professor at the University of Rhode Island, and Dacia Maraini, an Italian author who is giving talks at the University of Rhode Island.

Photo courtesy of URI Italian professor Michelangelo La Luna Grazie