Staging the City: Rome and the Performance of Power
January 5 – March 9, 2012
Deadline June 30, 2011
The Honors Program is excited to offer its seventh annual winter-quarter study abroad program, “Staging the City: Rome and the Performance of Power.” Students will earn 15 credits of Honors (Honors 230 (10), and Honors 391 (5)) or Drama credits (Drama 499). Alternative credit may be available; this must be preapproved with your departmental advisers.
“Rome: Performing Power in the City” will use 2,000 years of performance traditions, literature, painting, and architecture to consider how Rome created, maintained, and circulated its own image of imperial and cultural power first as the heart of the Roman Empire, then as the capital of Catholic Christendom, later as a city of Papal Princes, and the epicenter of high culture on any European tour, and finally, under Mussolini, as the site of the new (Old) Empire.
How Rome occupied its unique charismatic position in European history is largely a product of its own self-promotion. Rome the city invented Rome the ideal, fashioned and re-fashioned itself across the centuries, and those acts of invention can be read as a powerful performance of civic identity. Combining the architecture of the city with plays, art, pageants, spectacles, gladiatorial games and opera, all staged to promote the values of Rome, we consider how the city fashioned its own identity as the center of power and culture from Classical Empire through the Enlightenment, to the restoration of empire under Mussolini: Roma Eterna, remained eternal by re-staging itself.
The course will include excursions to main historical sites of the city with instruction in both ancient and contemporary art in Rome and the surrounding area. A sampling of excursions may include: the Pantheon, Vatican City, the Colosseum, E.U.R., Contemporary Art Museum, the Forum, and Ostia Antica. Rome is centrally located and the class will take advantage of day and over night trips to Florence, Sienna, and possibly Naples.
Odai Johnson, Department of Drama, University of Washington
Patricia Gaborik, Medici Institute, Rome, Italy
Rome: Performing Power in the City – Honors 230 (5 credits)
Fascism and Spectacle: The Return to Empire – Honors 230 (5 credits)
Independent Research in Rome – Honors 397 (2 credits)
Introduction to Italian – Honors 397 (3 credits)
Note: Students may also receive Drama credits. Other departmental credits may be available per departmental preapproval.
For more information and to apply visit the IPE website