Italy Reads

Calendar of Events

You must RSVP for all events at the link provided or by writing to or by telephone 06.681.91.223.

Photo ID is required for entry to the JCU campus.

Please return to this page for updates during the academic year.

NEW ADDITION -  Italy Reads  will now offer opportunities for high school students to acquire valuable experience in the context of Alternanza Scuola Lavoro.  Please contact Gina Marie Spinelli at for details.

Professional Development Courses for High School Teachers

Extended deadline for applications:  8 January 2018

Italy Reads 2018 "The Mystery of Writing: Teaching with Flannery O'Connor's Short Stories" - 30 hours

Thursdays, 4:30-6:00pm, 18 January - 3 May 2018. Instructors: Andrew Rutt and Elena Buia Rutt
Apply here by 11 December 2017.

"Information and Misinformation in a Fake News World" - 30 hours

Tuesdays, 4:30-6:00pm, 16 January - 3 May 2018. Instructor: Deanna Lee
Apply here by 11 December 2017.

Italy Reads Video Production Workshops for high school students

These workshops will be conducted by JCU students under the supervision of Prof. Brian Thomson and represent an opportunity for students to ask questions that arise from a careful study of the resources provided below.

Learning Objectives
By the end of the seminar students should understand why some adaptations succeed while others fail and how preproduction can help them to craft films that look and sound better than their budgets would suggest they should. They should emerge from the course with an understanding of how different audio and video production techniques can help them to tell their stories as effectively as possible.

Limited seating available. Two student representatives per school can attend and share the content of the workshop with his/her schoolmates following the workshop. Advance registration is required at indicating the preferred session. Places will be assigned on a first-come basis. There will be a waitlist.

  • 15 November 2017, 3:00-5:00pm
  • 22 November 2017, 3:00-5:00pm
  • 29 November 2017, 3:00-5:00pm

Resources for obligatory study prior to the Workshop:

Monday 15, January, 2018, midnight - Deadline for submissions to the Italy Reads Student Video Contest. Please see Student Video Contest for more information on how to participate. Students are encouraged to submit as many videos as they like. Each video submitted to the contest must be accompanied by:

  • a completed Video Contest Submission Form which will require: Name of school; Name of teacher; Class presenting the submission to the contest; Names of all students involved in making video (both those appearing in and those involved in other aspects of the production. Certification of participation will be based on this list, Email address and contact information for the person submitting the video who will be responsible for any further communication with Italy Reads regarding the video.
  • a Cover Letter, in English, that presents the group and the video (25-word introduction)

Please see our webpage dedicated to the Student Video Contest for rules and regulations.
Students and teachers are strongly encouraged to consider the issues related to copyright and intellectual property rights. We highly recommend that students consult the document Bound By Law ©2006 Keith Aoki, James Boyle, Jennifer Jones.

Thursday 8, March, 2018, 6:00p.m. – 8:30p.m. Italy Reads Student Video Contest Award Ceremony, Aula Magna Regina, Guarini Campus, John Cabot University, Via della Lungara 233 (Trastevere). Obligatory registration.

Italy Reads Exchange Visits with JCU Student Volunteers

JCU students who choose to train to become Italy Reads Volunteers are available to travel to  Italian and international high school classrooms to engage students in discussions of the play as well as other topics of general cultural interest. These visits will be scheduled primarily during the months of October, November, February and March. Teachers are encouraged to contact with their request for a scheduled visit as soon as possible.
Additionally, by request and pending availability of classroom space, Italy Reads will schedule exchange visits between JCU student volunteers and individual classes of high school students at the university campus throughout the academic year.
Teachers should contact to schedule a visit.

Italy Reads Poster Session and Exhibition

Participating high school students are encouraged to present a summary of their experiences with the Italy Reads program. A Call for Participation will be announced in the fall and the Poster Session will take place in early May 2018. Five presentations will be selected and students will be invited to present their experience with the Italy Reads program responding to the questions of invited guests.

Italy Writes Competition

Sunday 1, April, 2018, midnight, deadline for submissions. Please see Italy Writes for more information on how to participate.
Awards will be presented by the Writer in Residence during the Summer Institute of the Institute for Creative Writing and Literary Translation in June 2018.

Italy Reads Theatre in collaboration with The English Theatre of Rome – The Belle of Amherst. Weekend afternoon and evening performances. October 2017.

Wednesday 11, October, 2017, 6:00p.m. – 8:30p.m. Master Class specially for Italy Reads Participating Teachers - lead by Former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins, Aula Magna Regina, Guarini Campus, John Cabot University, via della Lungara 233. Obligatory registration.

Thursday 12, October, 2017, 5:00p.m. – 7:00p.m. Italy Reads Keynote Address by Former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins, Auditorium of the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, Via della Lungara 230. Obligatory registration.

Past Italy Reads Keynote Speakers

  • Italy Reads 2016, The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams - Sarah Churchwell
  • Italy Reads 2015, The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison - Alessandro Portelli
  • Italy Reads 2014, A Farewell to Arms - Silvia Ammary
  • Italy Reads 2013, The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri- Jhumpa Lahiri
  • Italy Reads 2012, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald - Sarah Churchwell
  • Italy Reads 2011, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers - Cathy Fussell
  • Italy Reads 2010, Our Town by Thornton Wilder - Buck Herron
  • The Big Read Rome 2009, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - Charles J. Shields

Teacher and Book Group Leader Training Workshops - 12 May and, a replica on 23 September 2017, 9:00a.m. – 4:30p.m. Presented by JCU English literature professors  Lewis Klausner and Alessandra Grego. Resource Material for use by teachers and students is available on our Resources for Teachers page ( Participation in the workshop is free of charge. While it is not obligatory to participate in the Teacher Training Workshop to be be part of Italy Reads, these workshops provide teachers with important information and an opportunity to exchange ideas with colleagues. The workshops include a discussion of opportunities and procedures for Alternanza Scuola Lavoro at JCU.

Italy Reads 2017 Scholars Panel Discussion - strategies for teaching Emily Dickinson's poems in the classroom. Italian High School Teachers, Italy Reads 2017 Scholars, attendees of the Italy Reads Professional Development Course on Emily Dickinson, Spring 2017

Alternanza Scuola Lavoro at JCU – Summary 2016-2017
- Italy Reads
- Italy Pitches
- Project 1 - How to Write an Effective CV and Cover Letter
and How to Prepare for an Interview