Victoria Kirkham's "Vittore Branca: In Memoriam"

American Boccaccio Bibliography for 2002-2004, compiled by Christopher Kleinhenz [pdf]

ABA membership and news submission form

About the ABA

Heliotropia, forum for Boccaccio research and interpretation

American Boccaccio Association
Newsletter Spring 2005

Greetings from the president

The American Boccaccio Association is happy to announce its alliance with Heliotropia, the online Boccaccio journal established by Prof. Michael Papio. In an effort to modernize our operations, we will be posting our bibliography and news on web-pages linked to this site. However, because we do not want to lose any of you who prefer to receive your information on paper, we will continue to send out a paper newsletter to those who request it. As usual, we will be holding both a Boccaccio session and a Lectura Boccacci at the MLA (see details below).

I recently launched into a project of my own regarding plays based on the Griselda story. Thinking there would be a handful of such plays, I was astonished to find more than thirty, stretching from the fifteenth century into the twentieth – another reminder of how richly Boccaccio, in addition to his own prolific literary production, has continued to inspire other writers. Of course, all of us who write about Boccaccio can add ourselves to the list of evidence of his ongoing powers of inspiration.

In the attempt to reach all of our members via e-mail we have produced our own list but we would like to urge you to send us any further updates to be added to our directory. This will allow us to help American Boccaccio scholars contact each other, and to keep us posted on your Boccaccio-related activities. With best wishes for the remainder of the academic year,

Janet Smarr, ABA President


The American Boccaccio Association is accepting proposals for the session “Giovanni Boccaccio”, at the MLA annual conference in Philadelphia, December 27-30, 2006.

Any abstract related to Giovanni Boccaccio’s life, works, fortuna, and comparative study is welcome.

Please send proposals to Janet Smarr (email). Deadline for submission: March 20, 2006.

Howard R. Marraro Prize Awarded to Marilyn Migiel

The prestigious Howard R. Marraro Prize was presented this past fall to Marilyn Migiel, of Cornell University, for her book A Rhetoric of the Decameron, published by the University of Toronto Press. A detailed description of this honor was provided in the MLA's press release.

Lectura Boccacci Project

At the MLA conference in Philadelphia, Dec. 27-30, 2004, the ABA sponsored Kevin Brownlee's presentation of Decameron II.1. At next year's MLA in Washington, Dec. 27-30, 2005, Stephen Grossvogel will present the reading of Decameron III.10.

Michael Sherberg, the editor of the Day IV volume, is soon to publish a list of contributors, and invites any of you interested in contributing to contact him.

MLA 2005

The next MLA conference will be held in Washington DC, December 27-30, 2005. If you are interested in participating in the ABA session please send an abstract to Janet Smarr by the end of March 2005.

Upcoming sessions (2005)
Fortieth International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, MI
May 5-8, 2005

Session: Recent research on Boccaccio
Organizer and Presider: Pina Palma (Southern Connecticut State Univ.)
Giuseppe Mazzotta (Yale Univ.) "The Correspondence between Boccaccio and Petrarch".
Jim Rhodes (Southern Connecticut State Univ.) "Christian and Saracen: Appearances, Identity, and the Truth of Religion(s) in Decameron I, 3 and X, 9".
Richard Neuse (Univ. of Rhode Island) "Didactismo por el Terror": The 'Infernal' Education of the Ladies of Ravenna in Decameron V, 8".

Session: Fourteenth-Century Humanism II.
Organizer: Jess Paehlke (Center for Medieval Studies, Univ. of Toronto)
Presider: William Chester Jordan (Princeton Univ.)
Kenneth P. Clarke (Univ. College, Univ. of Oxford) "Boccaccio's Teseida and its Commentary Context".

Session: Boccaccio and Feminist Criticism I.
Organizer and Presider: Regina Psaki (Univ. of Oregon)
Ashleigh Imus (Cornell Univ.) "'Vaga è la donna vega': The Gendering of 'Vago' in the Decameron".
Michaela Paasche Grudin (Lewis and Clark College) "Unmasking Il Corbaccio's Widow".
Alessia Ronchetti (Univ. of Cambridge) "Silent Statues and Talking Trees: A Feminist Narratological Reading of Il Filocolo".

Session: Boccaccio and Feminist Criticism II: Marilyn Migiel's A Rhetoric of the "Decameron" (A Roundtable).
Disa Gambera (Univ. of Utah)
Michael Papio (Univ. of Massachusetts-Amherst)
Alessia Ronchetti (Univ. of Cambridge)
Thomas C. Stillinger (Univ. of Utah)
Marilyn Miguel (Cornell Univ.) "Figurative Language and Sex Wars in the Decameron: The Case of Pampinea".

Modern Language Association 2005 Convention, Washington DC, Dec. 27-30, 2005

Session: Boccaccio
Marilyn Migiel (Cornell Univ.) "The Moral Vocabulary of the Decameron".
Kristina M. Olson (Columbia Univ.) "A Political Boccaccio? Avarice and the Merchant Class in the Decameron and Esposizioni".
Carol F. Heffernan (Rutgers Univ.) "Boccaccio's Decameron 6.10 and Chaucer's Canterbury Tales VI.287-968. Thinking on Your Feet and the Set-Piece".

Session: Approaches to Teaching Medieval and Renaissance Italian Literature
Organizer: Alison Cornish (Univ. of Michigan)
Presider: Olivia Holmes (Yale Univ.)
Michael Papio (Univ. of Massachusetts-Amherst) "Teaching Boccaccio's Decameron to Thousands of Students".
Christopher Kleinhenz (Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison) "Teaching Petrarch and Petrarchism in North America".
Dennis Looney (Univ. of Pittsburgh) "Teaching the History of Science through Medieval and Early Modern Italian Literature".

Past sessions on Boccaccio, presented in 2004-05

American Association for Italian Studies XXIV Annual Conference
April 29-May 2, 2004, Ottawa, Canada

Session: Peste nel Decameron
Organizer and presider: Pier Massimo Forni, Johns Hopkins University
Martin Marafioti (Duke Univ.), "Post-Decameron Plague Treatises and the Boccaccian Innovation of Narrative Prophylaxis".
P.M. Forni (Johns Hopkins University), "Women Readers, Women Doers, and the Plague in Boccaccio's Decameron".

Session: The Representation of Women in the Middle Ages
Presider: Giuliana Corugati. (Emory University)
Presenter: Roberta Ricci (Seton Hall Univ.), "Sexuality and the Errors of Desire: Boccaccio's Ladies in Otio (and in Love)".

39th International Congress on Medieval Studies
May 6-9, 2004, Kalamazoo, MI

Session: Violence and Domestic Comedy I
Presider: Nicola Witschi (Western Michigan Univ.)
Presenter: John K. Williams (Columbia Univ.) "Comedy, Violence, and the Body in Decameron V.10".

The American Association of Teachers of Italian Annual Convention
Tempe, AZ October 14-16, 2004

Session: "Boccaccio"
Presider: Juliann Vitullo, Arizona State University
Presenters: Simone Marchesi (Princeton Univ.) "Il medico di calandrino: una diagnosi intertestuale in Decameron IX".
Susanna Barsella (Georgetwon Univ.) "Cavalcanti and Mastro Simone. The Professions and Boccaccio's Critique to the Medieval Science".
Elsa Filosa (U. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) "Giovani donne, vecchi intellettuali: ambiguità di un rapporto nel Decameron".

"Science, Literature, and the Arts in the Medieval and Early Modern World"
Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Binghamton University (SUNY)
Interdisciplinary Conference, October 22-23, 2004

Alison Cornish (Univ. of Michigan) "Not like an Arab': Poetry and Astronomy in the Episode of Idalogos in Boccaccio's Filocolo".

The American Association of Teachers of Italian Annual Meeting
Nov. 19-21, 2004, Chicago, IL (in conjunction with ACTFL)

Session: Teaching Italian Medieval/Renaissance Culture
Presider: Paolo Giordano (Univ. of Central Florida).
Presenter: Regina Psaki (Univ. of Oregon) "Teaching the Decameron through Manuscripts, or Manuscripts through the Decameron".

ABA session at the MLA, December 27-30, 2004, Philadelphia, PA

Session: "Boccaccio"
Presider: Roberta Morosini
Irene Zanini Cordi (U.C. Berkeley), "From Paralysis to Seduction: Mourning and Creative Melancholy in Boccaccio's Fiammetta".
Elsa Filosa (Univ. North Carolina, Chapel Hill) "Modalità di contatto tra Decameron e Corbaccio".
Victoria Kirkham (U. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia) "Boccaccio Biographer".
Massimo Gennari (Ente Nazionale Giovanni Boccaccio) "Giardini celesti, giardini terrestri".

The American Association for Italian Studies XXV Annual Convention
Chapel Hill, NC, April 14-17, 2005

Session: "Social Worth and Performative Utterance in Boccaccio's Decameron"
Organizers: Valeria Finucci and Helga Giampiccolo (Duke University)
Presider: Roberta Ricci (Bryn Mawr College).
Laura Orsi (Duke Univ.) "Ghismonda and Griselda: Victims or Winners? (Decameron IV, 1 and X, 10)".
Anna G. Cafaro (Boston College) "La funzione del linguaggio comico e caricaturesco nelle novelle di Calandrino".
David U. B. Liu (Duke Univ.) "The Transubstantiation of the Nightingale in Decameron V, 4."
Helga Giampiccolo (Duke Univ.) " The Economic Underpinning of Language: Authorized Spokepersons in the Decameron".
Student Union 3201. Friday, April 15, 8:30-10:00 am

Session: The Art of the Story in the Trecento: Boccaccio and Petrarch
Organizer: Marilyn Migiel (Cornell Univ.)
Presider: Giancarlo Lombardi (C.U.N.Y. - College of Staten Island)
Marilyn Migiel (Cornell Univ.) "Can the Lower Classes Be Wiser? An Answer from the Stories of the Decameron".
Irene Eibenstein-Alvisi (U. of Texas at Austin). "Perfect Griselda and Her Imperfect Tellers".

Session: Periodization in Intellectual and Literary History: Medieval, Renaissance, Early Modern, and Modern.
Presider: Regina Psaki (Univ. of Oregon)
Jason Houston (Univ. of Oklahoma) "Boccaccio and Vernacular Humanism: Esposizioni sopra la Comedia di Dante".

Session: Intertextuality and Interdiscursiveness: Boccaccio Writer and (Self-) Commentator
Organizer and Presenter: Roberta Ricci (Bryn Mawr College)
Roberta Ricci (Bryn Mawr College) "Love and 'Note Argute': Boccaccio's Marginalia in the Teseida.
Elsa Filosa (U. of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) "Intertestualità tra Decameron e De Mulieribus Claris".
Tobias Gittes, (Concordia Univ.) "'Now Gods stand up for Bastards!' Autobiography, Bastardy, and the Birth of Poetry in Boccaccio's Filocolo and Ameto"
Martin Eisner (Columbia Univ.) "The Metamorphosis of Dante and Petrarch in Boccaccio's Caccia di Diana".