The Italian Language Week Go Digital and Live

Events organized by the Italian Cultural Institute in Los Angeles, under the auspices of the Consulates General in Los Angeles and Houston


In anticipation of the 20th annual edition of the Italian Language Week in the World (October 19-25, 2020) on October 15, 2020, renowned journalist and writer Beppe Severgnini  presented the premiere English book launch of his most recent work, Neoitaliani - Un manifesto (Rizzoli 2020) with translator Antony ShugaarThe Neoitalians will be published in 2021 by Penguin-Random House. The webinar was presented by Valeria Rumori, Director of the Italian Cultural Institute in Los Angeles, and introduced by the Hon. Silvia Chiave, Consul General of Italy in Los Angeles.

Mr Severgnini explored the process of translation with Antony Shugaar, who translated his book Off the Rails - A Train Trip Through Life (Berkley, New York 2019), as well as many award winning novels of prestigious Italian literary prizes such as the Premio Strega (from Storia della mia gente by Edoardo Nesi in 2011 and La scuola cattolica by Edoardo Albinati in 2016), and noir fiction works by Gianrico Carofiglio, Massimo Carlotto, Giorgio Faletti and many others.

Severgnini then presented and discussed with the audience the 50 reasons to be Italian  described in "Neoitaliani",  a book that was born from observing Italians during the pandemic emergency, the new Italians able and ready to do new, exceptional things. A very lively Q&A session followed, with many questions.

A video of the event is available here:


The other events organized this year by the Italian Cultural Institute in Los Angeles with the Consulates General of Italy in Los Angeles and  Houston to promote Italian language and culture  include two exhibitions on the theme chosen for this year, which is “Italian Between Word and Image: Graffiti, Illustrations, Comic Books” as well as several presentations and online discussions.


Contemporary Comics: Themes, Authors and Language in the Italian Graphic Novel, inaugurated on September 8, takes us on a journey through the themes, authors and language of comics in Italy. The exhibition also includes two exclusive interviews with the artists Davide Reviati and LRNZ, available on the Institute's YouTube channel along with a virtual tour of the exhibit ( The exhibition is organized by the Italian Cultural Institute of Los Angeles in collaboration with Lucca Crea & Lucca Comics & Games, an international festival of comics, animation, illustration, games and TV held every autumn in the Tuscan city.


Drawing Stories. The Evolution of the Italian Language in Comics is the virtual exhibition that on October 19, 2020 will be inaugurated simultaneously by the Cultural Institutes of San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington DC and Toronto with Romics, the international festival of comics, animation, cinema and games.

The focus is on the evolution of the language of comics from the great masters to emerging authors, a virtual journey to discover the profound changes, particularly in narrative terms, that the ninth art is experiencing in recent years, starting with the figure of the screenwriter.

The exhibition is accompanied by a series of three meetings focused on the changes taking place in Italian and international comics and graphic novels: the innovative and internationally influential comic production of Disney Italia will be the discussed on October 21; a journey behind the scenes of a comic book that will see Diabolik as the protagonist in a dialogue on how to get to that extraordinary alchemy between story and image is the theme of the October 23 webinar; and the graphic novel, the narrative impact, the introduction of new narrative languages and rhythms will be the topics on October 28. Tito Faraci, Alex Bertani, Barbara Baldi, Sergio Brancato, Igort, Mario Gomboli, Giuseppe Palumbo and other authors of the Italian scene will take part in these virtual encounters.


The c will be available for free, in Italian and English, at website and on the websites of the Institutes involved from October 19 to November 15

On 20 October 2020 at 18:30 PDT, also on the occasion of Fellini100, the webinar Fellini Forever will be held, including professor Alessandro Carrera (University of Houston) disussing "Fellini's Deep Time: Archeology and Modernity in Fellini Satyricon and Rome", a research on the accumulation of layers and layers of history, religion and mythology in the famous trilogy dedicated to Rome (La dolce vita, Fellini Satyricon, Rome). Alessandro Carrera is the author of Fellini's Eternal Rome: Paganism and Christianity in Federico Fellini's Films (Bloomsbury, 2019) winner of the Flaiano Award for Italinistica. Professor Áine O’Healy (Loyola Marymount University) will then present 'Fellini's Projections of the Feminine,” an examination of female figures in Fellini's production. The meeting will be moderated by Professor Thomas Harrison (UCLA), presented by Valeria Rumori, Director of the Institute, and introduced by the Consul General of Italy in Houston, Federico Ciattaglia.
Link to register


On 23 October 2020 at 4:00 pm PDT, in the virtual meeting East and West 2,500 years of history to discover each other: did we succeed? will take place led by  Federico Rampini, Italian columnist and correspondent for the United States for the daily newspaper La Repubblica. He will present the theme of his next book, in which he explores the cultural roots of the polarization between East and West. The Genoese journalist and writer will guide the public on a journey through history, to understand where we are today, and also investigate the different responses to the emergency created by the pandemic.

The meeting is organized by the Los Angeles Institute with the Consulate General of Italy in Houston and will be introduced by Consul General Federico Ciattaglia.
Link to register


On 27 October 2020, at 6:30 pm PDT the presentation Italian Comics. From "Corriere dei Piccoli" to Gipi, Professor Antonio Iannotta (University of San Diego) will analyze how the Italian language has been used historically in comics and how it is used in such a complex audiovisual medium. He will retrace the authors, stories, heroes, magazines and books that created the illustrated image of Italians in an exciting journey into the Italian language used in comics in relation to cinema, literature, art and other media. Antonio Iannotta has published essays and articles on cinema, TV series, comics, literature and media theory. He was editorial director of the Comicon Editions, for which he edited comics and essays on authors and the main Italian publishing houses and beyond. He is co-author of three documentaries on comics. He teaches Italian at the University of San Diego and is the Artistic Director of the San Diego Italian Film Festival. Link to register

The webinars of October 15, 20 and 27 will be published on the Institute's YouTube channel (


During the month of October, the last three episodes of the Institute’s series Meet the Author Online will also be published on the Institute's YouTube channel ( Inaugurated for the Institute by Dacia Maraini last April on the occasion of World Book Day 2020, the series offers video messages from some of the most important contemporary Italian writers: Gianrico CarofiglioErri De Luca, Valeria ParrellaAntonio Scurati, Melania MazzuccoLeonardo MerliniMauro CovacichPaolo di Paolo and Franco Avicolli. The series will conclude with Marco Nereo RotelliSilvia Avallone and Nadia Terranova. It was created by the IIC of Los Angeles with the John Fowles Center for Creative Writing of Chapman University, Orange County, and Dacia Maraini.


All events are organized by the Italian Cultural Institute in Los Angeles, under the auspices of the Consulates General in Los Angeles and Houston, in collaboration with Lucca Crea & Lucca Comics & Games, ROMICS, the Italian Cultural Institutes of San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington DC and Toronto, University of Houston, Loyola Marymount University, UCLA, University of San Diego, Chapman University and the Pino Library of San Francisco.