Valeria Forte, Ph.D.

Dr. Valeria Forte joined the Italian faculty of Modern Languages at the University of Dallas in 2003. Since her appointment, she has been actively involved in the UD Italian program in Rome and the development of UD’s Italian concentration and Italian major. She was Director of the UD Italian program from 2007-2016 and teaches all levels of Italian language and literature. Her areas of expertise include classical influences in Italian literature, Italian Medieval and Renaissance literature, the role of Jewish thought in Medieval Italy, Italian religious and mystical literature, and the relationship between European philosophy and Italian literature. Other aspects of her research focus on Petrarch, Italian epic poetry, Italian Neoclassicism and Romanticism, the poetry and philosophy of Leopardi, Pascoli and Italian Decadentism, the Futurism of D’Annunzio, and Verga’s contribution to Italian Verismo. Dr. Forte also devotes her academic interest to research on effective methodologies of Italian language teaching, questions of translation, and the classical etymology of Italian language. She has also expanded her understanding of Italian origins with studies in Mediterranean and biblical archaeology. Dr. Forte’s most recent research focuses on the historical, spiritual and cultural interaction between Rome and Jerusalem. She is actively engaged with academic institutions in the US, Europe and Israel where she presents her research.

Areas of Expertise

Italian Literature

  • Theology and Philosophy in Medieval Italian Literature
  • Il dolce stil novo
  • Dante Studies
  • Classical Influences in Italian Humanism and Renaissance 
  • Petrarca Studies
  • Italian Epic Poetry
  • Neoclassicism – Foscolo
  • Leopardi’s Poetry and Philosophy
  • Decadentism

Archaeology

  • Classical
  • Biblical
  • Meso-American
  • Megalithic
Jewish Studies

  • Jewish Literature and Philosophy in Medieval Italy and Spain

 

Education

  • Ph.D., Humanities, Italian Literature, University of Texas at Dallas
  • M.A., Jewish Studies, Biblical and Medieval, Hebrew College, Boston
  • M.A., Anthropology, Etruscan Archaeology, University of Texas at Arlington
  • M.A., Spanish, Medieval Literature, University of Texas at Arlington
  • B.A., Spanish and Classics, University of Texas at Arlington
  • Maturita' Classica, Italy

Academic Appointments

  • Affiliate Assistant Professor of Italian
  • Director of Italian Program

Recent Courses

Italian Program
  • Dante (MIT 4346)
  • Italian Poetry and Philosophy (MIT 4321)
  • Italian Language and Culture (MIT 4V50)
  • Italian Epic Poetry (MIT 3V50)
  • La Poesia Stilnovistica (MIT 3V50)
  • Independent Research (MIT 4V51)
  • Advanced Communication in Italian (MIT 3323)
  • Italian Literary Tradition II (MIT 3322)
  • Italian Literary Tradition I (MIT 3321)
  • Second Year Italian II (MIT 2312)
  • Second Year Italian I (MIT 2311)
  • First Year Italian II (MIT 1302)
  • First Year Italian I (MIT 1301)

Classics Program

  • Mediterranean Archaeology (CLC 4350, CLC 5301)

Selected Publications

• "Etruscan Origins and Italian Nationalism." Studia Europaea, vol. 1 (2011).

• "Martin Buber's Response to the Historical and Cultural Context of the First World War." Studia Europaea vol. 4 (2009).

Presentations

• "Intellectual Trajectory in Medieval Italian Literature: Maimonides, Dante, Immanuel Ben Solomon." Hebrew College, Boston, MA, Dec. 2019.

• "Consideration on the Question of Prophecy in Maimonides and Spinoza." Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel, Dec. 2019.

• "God's Nature as Revealed in the Book of Exodus." Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies, Jerusalem, Israel, May 2019.

• "Divine Comedy, Paradiso Canto I and XXXIII." Reading Dante's Divine Comedy, University of Dallas, Feb. 2019.

• "The Use of Memory for the Poetic Creation of a 'Locus Amoenus' in Petrarch's Chiare, fresche et dolci acque." Medieval Association of the Pacific Annual Conference, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, April 2018.

• "On the Process of Knowledge Acquisition: The Role of Pure Intuition in the Guide of the Perplexed." Hebrew College, Boston MA, December 2017.

• "The Influence of Hekhalot Literature and Merkabah Tradition on the Divine Comedy." Medieval Association of the Pacific Annual Conference, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA, March 2017.

• "UD Faculty Symposium on the Divine Comedy" University of Dallas, Spring 2016.

• "Classical Literary Sources and Material Evidence in the Ancient Mediterranean World" University of Dallas, Spring 2015.

• "The Italic Temples of Schiavi di Abruzzo: Samnite Archaeology" University of Dallas Rome Walking Tours Lecture Series, Fall 2013.

• "The Chariot of Ezekiel in the Divine Comedy" University of Dallas Rome Walking Tours Lecture Series, Fall 2012.

• "The Mysticism of Saint Francis of Assisi: Laudes Creaturarum" University of Dallas, Fall 2012.

• "Italian Dolce Stil Novo: Guido Guinizzelli and Guido Cavalcanti" UT Dallas, Spring 2012.

• "Gerusalemme Liberata" University of Dallas, Fall 2011.

• "The Eternity of Leopardi's Poetry" University of Dallas Rome Walking Tours Lecture Series, Fall 2011.

• "A Night of Italian Poetry from Cielo d'Alcamo to Gabriele D'Annunzio" University of Dallas, Rome Walking Tours Lecture Series, Fall 2010.

• "The Trojan Legend in Etruria" University of Dallas, Spring 2010.

• "Classical Roots of the Divine Comedy: Lucretius' De Rerum Natura" UT Dallas, Fall 2009.

• Dante Symposium with Dr. Robert Hollander University of Dallas, Spring 2006, 2008 & 2009.

• "Italian Neo-Classicism: Ugo Foscolo's Alla Sera" University of Dallas, Spring 2007.

• "The Homeric Odysseus in the Divine Comedy" panel discussion with Dr. Karl Maurer. University of Dallas, Spring 2007.

• "Don Quijote's Rhetorical Discourse: Sign of Madness or Wisdom?" UT Arlington, Spring 1998.