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The winners of the 2019 AAIS Book Prize!

We look forward to recognizing the authors in person next year at our 2021 conference in Bologna!


G. Geltner, Roads to Health: Infrastructure and Urban Wellbeing in Later Medieval Italy, University of Pennsylvania Press. 

Renaissance, 18th, and 19th Centuries 

Paola Cori, Forms of Thinking in Leopardi’s Zibaldone: Religion, Science and Everyday Life in an Age of Disenchantment, Legenda. 

20th and 21st Centuries 

Stephanie Malia Hom, Empire’s Mobius Strip: Historical Echoes in Italy’s Crisis of Migration and Detention, Cornell University Press. 

*Honorable Mention: Marisa Escolar, Allied Encounters: The Gendered Redemption of World War II Italy, Fordham University Press. 

Film and other Media Studies 

Giorgio Bertellini, The Divo and the Duce: Promoting Film Stardom and Political Leadership in 1920s America, University of California Press. 


Up to four AAIS Book Prizes will be awarded at next year’s conference for the best book in Italian Studies published in 2019 (please check date of publication on print edition of book before submitting).

The Book Award Committee gives prizes in the following categories: Medieval; Renaissance, 18th, and 19th Centuries; 20th and 21st Centuries; and Film and other Media Studies. When sending your entry, please indicate the category that best reflects the primary areas of your publication. Translations, textbooks, creative writings, and edited volumes cannot be entered into the competition. 

Kindly send 5 copies of the volume (or bound photocopies if the publisher cannot spare additional copies) by January 5, 2020 to: Monica Seger, Department of Modern Languages & Literatures, William & Mary, Washington Hall 210, 241 Jamestown Road, Williamsburg, VA 23185. Winners will be announced at the conference in March!


Three AAIS Book Prizes were awarded at the conference at Wake Forest University for the best books in Italian studies published in 2018. Congratulations to the winners: 

          • Medieval: William Caferro. Petrarch's War: Florence and the Black Death in Context. Cambridge University Press.
          • Renaissance, 18th and 19th Centuries: Cristina Mazzoni. Golden Fruit: A Cultural History of Oranges in Italy. University of Toronto Press.
          • 20th and 21st Centuries: Luca Cottini. The Art of Objects: The Birth of Italian Industrial Culture, 1878-1928. University of Toronto Press.

2017 AAIS Book Prizes Awarded

Three AAIS Book Prizes were awarded at the conference in Sorrento for the best books in Italian studies published in 2017: 

  • Renaissance, 18th and 19th Centuries: Barbara Spackman. Accidental Orientalists: Modern Italian Travelers in Ottoman Lands. Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2017.
  • 20th and 21st Centuries: Teresa Fiore. Pre-Occupied Spaces: Remapping Italy's Transnational Migrations and Colonial Legacies. New York: Fordham University Press, 2017.
  • Film and Other Media Studies: Timothy C. Campbell. The Techne of Giving: Cinema and the Generous Form of Life. New York: Fordham University Press, 2017. 

2016 Book Prizes Awarded

Four AAIS Book Prizes were awarded at the conference in Columbus for the best books in Italian studies published in 2016: 

      • Medieval: Maria Luisa Ardizzone. Reading as the Angels Read: Speculation and Politics in Dante’s Banquet. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2016.
      • Renaissance, 18th, and 19th centuries: Giancara Periti. In the Courts of Religious Ladies: Art, Vision, and Pleasure in Italian Renaissance Convents. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2016.
      • 20th and 21st centuries: Serenella Iovino. Ecocriticism and Italy: Ecology, Resistance, and Liberation. New York: Bloomsbury, 2016.
      • Film and Other Media Studies: Robert Rushing. Descended From Hercules: Biopolitics and the Muscled Male Body On Screen. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2016.

2015 Book Prizes Awarded

Four AAIS Book Prizes were awarded at the conference in Baton Rouge for the best books in Italian studies published in 2015: 

  • Medieval: Dennis Romano. Markets and Marketplaces in Medieval Italy. Yale UP

  • Renaissance, 18th and 19th centuries: Adrian Randolph. Touching Objects. Intimate Experiences. Yale UP
  • 20th and 21st Century Literature: Giacomo Parinello.  Fault Lines. Berghahn 
  • Film and Other Media Studies: Reich, Jacqueline. The Maciste Films of Italian Silent Cinema. Indiana UP

    2014 Book Prizes Awarded

    Four AAIS Book Prizes were awarded at the conference in Zurich for the best books in Italian studies published in 2014: 

    • Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque: Guido Ruggiero, The Renaissance in Italy (Cambridge)
    • Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century: John Bessler, The Birth of American Law: An Italian Philosopher and the American Revolution (Carolina Academic Press)
    • Twentieth and Twenty-First Century: David Forgacs, Italy’s Margins: Social Exclusion and Nation Formation since 1861 (Cambridge University Press)
    • General: Rocco Rubini, The Other Renaissance: Italian Humanism between Hegel and Heidegger (The University of Chicago Press)

      2013 Book Prizes Awarded

      Three AAIS Book Prizes were awarded at the conference in Zurich for the best books in Italian studies published in 2013: 

      • Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque: Paolo Squatriti, Landscape and Change in Early Medieval Italy: Chestnuts, Economy and Culture (Cambridge University Press).
      • Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century: Steven Soper, Building a Civil Society (Toronto UP).
      • Twentieth and Twenty-First Century: Gaia Giuliani and Cristina Lombardi-Diop, Bianco e nero; Storia dell’identità razziale degli italiani (Le Monnier).

        2012 Book Prizes Awarded

        Two AAIS Book Prizes were awarded at the conference in Eugene for the best books in Italian studies published in 2012: 

        • Pierpaolo Antonello. Contro il materialismo. Le “due culture” in Italia; bilancio di un secolo. Turin: Aragno
        • Eleonora Stoppino. Genealogies of Fiction: Women Warriors and the Dynastic Imagination in the Orlando furioso

          Previous Book Prize Winners


          • Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque: Marcia B. Hall, The Sacred Image in the Age of Art (Yale UP, 2011)
          • Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century: Paola Gambarota, Irresistible Signs: The Genius of Language and Italian National Identity (UP Toronto, 2011)
          • Twentieth Century: Philip Cooke. The Legacy of the Italian Resistance (Palgrave 2011) (Toronto UP)
          • General: Dennis Looney, Freedom Readers. The African American Reception of Dante Alighieri and the Divine Comedy (Notre Dame UP, 2011)


            • Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque: Heather Webb: The Medieval Heart (Yale UP)
            • Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century: Francesca Savoia: Fra letterati e galantuomini (Societa’ Editrice Fiorentina)
            • Twentieth Century: Michelangelo Sabatino: Pride in Modesty: Modernist Architecture and the Vernacular Tradition in Italy (Toronto UP)


              • Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque: Meredith Ray: Writing Gender in Women’s Letter Collections of the Italian Renaissance (U Toronto P)
              • Twentieth Century: Lina Insana: Arduous Tasks: Primo Levi, Translation, and the Transmission of Holocaust Testimony (U Toronto P)
              • Film: Giorgio Bertellini: Italy in Early American Cinema: Race, Landscape, and the Picturesque (Indiana UP)
              • General: Andrea Mirabile: Scrivere la pittura: La ‘funzione Longhi’ nella letteratura italiana (Longo)

                2008: Cinzia Blum. Rewriting the Journey in Contemporary Italian Literature: Figures of Subjectivity in Progress. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

                2007: Guido Bonsaver. Censorship and Literature in Fascist Italy. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

                2006: Gabrielle Langdon. Medici Women: Portraits of Power, Love, and Betrayal. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

                2005: Christian Moevs. The Metaphysics of Dante’s Comedy. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

                2004: John Picchione. The New Avant-Garde in Italy: Theoretical Debate and Poetic Practices. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

                2003: Luca Somigli. Legitimizing the Artist: Manifesto Writing and European Modernism, 1885-1915. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

                2002: Nicoletta Pireddu. Decadenza ed economia simbolica nell’Europa fin de siècle. Verona: Edizioni Fiorini.

                2001: Massimo Lollini. Il vuoto della forma. Scrittura, testimonianza e verità. Genua: Marietti.

                2000: Olivia Holmes. Assembling the Lyric Self: Authorship from Troubadour Song to Italian Poetry Book. Minneapolis: U of Minnesota Press.



                © American Association for Italian Studies   

                AAIS Senior Graduate Assistant, Giulio Genovese (giuliog@sas.upenn.edu)

                AAIS Graduate Assistant, Deion Dresser


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