Academic Year 2023/2024 - Teacher: GIAN MICHELE GEROGIANNIS

Expected Learning Outcomes

According to the Dublin descriptors, students, at the end of the course, will demonstrate

- knowledge and understanding in a post-secondary level field of study and knowing the fundamental themes in one's field of study;

- ability to apply knowledge and understanding in order to demonstrate a professional approach and possess adequate skills both to conceive and support arguments and to solve problems in one's field of study

-  learning skills necessary to undertake subsequent studies with a high degree of autonomy.

The aim of the course is to provide students with a basic understanding of settlement dynamics in Sicily. Specific focus will be given to the processes of urban stratigraphy and the analysis of the individual phases that led to the birth, growth and transformation of the various settlements over the centuries, from around the 8th century B.C. to the end of the Roman Empire.

In addition to the general historical-archaeological information on the individual sites that will be presented, the aim of the course is to provide students with the tools they need to undertake an analysis of an urban complex.

At the end of the course, therefore, it will be possible to have a general overview of urban development in Sicily and to master the archaeological language needed to identify the basic elements of the ancient city (e.g. political structures, sacred, etc.) in its various phases of life.

Course Structure

The course includes face-to-face lectures that will provide the knowledge. In terms of skills, there will be classroom exercises (description of a city plan; public spaces, private spaces; main monuments; analysis of archaeological phases, etc.) and guided tours outside (mainly in the city of Catania).

Required Prerequisites

No prerequisites required.

Attendance of Lessons

Attendance is not compulsory.

Detailed Course Content

The course will start with an analysis of the definition of the city, both in the ancient and modern sense. The problems relating precisely to the study of urban complexes of different nature, typology and chronology (Greek colonial foundations; indigenous centres; Punic centres etc.), which make up a varied and multi-ethnic picture in Sicily, will be highlighted. These case studies will be analysed in their evolution and transformation over time, taking into account historical processes that have profoundly marked the settlement patterns of the island, such as, for example, the so-called Romanisation.

Both before and during the course of the lectures, the main elements that make up a city (e.g. agora, necropolis, fortifications, residential areas, public and sacred buildings, etc.) will also be explained, analysing their function and providing technical-scientific terminology.

Finally, through the presentation of some specific cases (such as Agrigento, Siracusa, Catania), some of the methods that can be used to approach the study of an ancient city will be shown.

Textbook Information

1.    Filippo Coarelli, Mario Torelli, Sicilia, Guide archeologiche Laterza, 2000, pp. 442.

2.    Francesco Gioacchino La Torre, Sicilia e Magna Grecia. Archeologia della colonizzazione greca d’Occidente, Manuali Laterza, 2011, pp. 5-28; 35-50; 58-60; 67-84; 97; 98-103; 107-115; 122-125; 139-152; 164-175; 185-188; 200-209; 224-242; 248-253; 257-260; 264-267; 269-290; 309-322; 329-333.

3.    Luigi Maria Caliò, Asty. Studi sulla città greca, 2012, pp. 13-37.

4.    Carmine Ampolo (a cura di), La Città e le città della Sicilia Antica, 2022, pp. 3-14; 29-102; 129-210; 263-270; 297-358; 373-436; (tot 296)


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For further information on sanctions and regulations concerning photocopying please refer to the regulations on copyright (Linee Guida sulla Gestione dei Diritti d’Autore) provided by AIDRO - Associazione Italiana per i Diritti di Riproduzione delle opere dell’ingegno (the Italian Association on Copyright).

All the books listed in the programs can be consulted in the Library.