Florence of the period between the fourteenth and the sixteenth century can be argued to represent not just the moment but also the surprisingly circumscribed place where Western modernity begins. In support of this thesis we will first briefly address the legacy of the “three crowns” of Florence—Dante, Petrarch and Boccaccio, and of their towering cultural achievements, and then we will follow as the city quickly moves into a period of militant humanism by the fifteenth century, and spend the bulk of our time at the court of enlightened Renaissance prince, lavish patron of the arts, and man of letters Lorenzo de’ Medici. It is here that, over a mere few decades, a statistically improbable number of pivotal writers, thinkers, and artists completed much of their best work.
Why Study Italian?
Italian, for cultural and economic reasons, is now the fifth most studied language in the world. Italian has been the language of famous men and women, poets, scientists, artists, innovators and conquerors.
Italian will challenge you with its sounds and peculiarity and it will captivate you with its musicality and rhythm.
You will also discover the rich and ancient Italian culture while learning the language: the Arts, the culinary traditions, the literary richness, the cutting-edge technologies, design and products, the love for Beauty, the passion for a “sociable dimension”. You will be acquainted with terms related to fashion, design, music and you will start to understand the words of Italian songs and Opera. Italian will bring you closer to Italy and to the European culture. It will open your eyes and mind to a very different life style and will enrich your résumé.
If you are interested in a career in the culinary arts, translation, education, commerce, design, travel industry, fashion… learn Italian with us!
Our History at SFU
Italian was first offered at Simon Fraser University in 1989. It all started with one course of Italian. Now, after many years of proud commitment, SFU offers its students the opportunity to pursue a Minor in Italian Studies
In these 28 years many SFU students have been enjoying our interactive and friendly courses. They have learnt the language through music, video and original materials. They have tasted Italian culture starting with a warm and welcoming environment in all our classes.