International Conference “Cultural Exchanges between Italy and the United States”

By April 20, 2023News

The first Biennial International Conference organized by the Sorbello Foundation and the Fondazione Ranieri di Sorbello in partnership with the University for Foreigners of Perugia and the John D. Calandra Italian American Institute was held in Perugia, Italy, on 20 and 21 March.

The two-day symposium focused on the theme “Cultural Exchanges between Italy and the United States” and explored the many facets of US-Italy relations in the cultural, economic, historical and political fields (see the conference program for details).

In the opening session held in the Aula Magna of the University for Foreigners and coordinated by Roberto Dolci, the vice-rector of the University for Foreigners Rolando Marini, the president of the Sorbello Foundation Ruggero Ranieri, and the Dean of the Calandra Institute Antony J. Tamburri, retraced the first three years of collaboration between a University that wants to be Italy’s ambassador to the world, a Foundation dedicated to building cultural bridges between Italy and the United States, and an Institute that promotes the development of Italian-American studies on both sides of the Atlantic. The most important outcome of the cooperation between the three institutions, as underlined by all the speakers, was the creation in 2021 of the Sorbello Fellowship, a $10,000 annual grant that supports research projects in the field of US-Italy relations.

The importance of cultural relations between the two sides of the Atlantic and the crucial role played in the 1950s by Uguccione Ranieri di Sorbello in the field of cultural diplomacy in the United States were also underlined by Fabio Finotti, director of the Italian Cultural Institute in New York, who gave his contribution to the opening session of the conference through a video recorded for the occasion.

The biennial conference in Perugia is conceived first and foremost as an opportunity to present the outcomes of the research projects financed through the Sorbello Fellowship, and to create a fruitful interdisciplinary dialogue between scholars. 

The recipients of the 2021 Sorbello Fellowship (Carla Francellini, Sabrina Vellucci and Giuliano Santangeli Valenzani) presented their work in the first panel of the Conference. 

The conference panels, which included presentations in English and Italian by Cristina Iuli, Barbara Turchetta, Alberto Stramaccioni, Antonella Valoroso, and Fred Gardaphé, were broadcast in live streaming and are now also available on the YouTube channels of the University for Foreigners and the Fondazione Ranieri di Sorbello.

Opening session, Aula Magna University for Foreigners, March 20, 2023 

Conference Panels, Fondazione Ranieri di Sorbello, March 21, 2023

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3