Laura Benedetti is the Laura and Gaetano De Sole Professorship of Contemporary Italian Culture at Georgetown University. Her articles span seven hundred years, from Boccaccio to Elena Ferrante. She is also the author of several volumes, including La sconfitta di Diana. Un percorso per la Gerusalemme liberata, The Tigress in the Snow: Motherhood and Literature in 20th-Century Italy (winner of the Flaiano International Prize), the edition and English translation of Lucrezia Marinella’s Exhortations to Women and to Others If They Please, Da Venezia al Cairo: il viaggio di Zaccaria Pagani nel primo Cinquecento, and the novels Un paese di carta and Secondo piano. She was Guest of Honor at the annual meeting of the American Association of Italian Studies (2016) and has received fellowships from the Renaissance Society of America, the Bogliasco Foundation, and the Delmas Foundation.
FEBRUARY CULTURAL EVENT:
Mediterranean Diplomacy in the 16th Century:
Zaccaria Pagani’s From Venice to Cairo
Sunday, February 20th at 2:30pm ET- WEBINAR
Prof. Laura Benedetti, Georgetown University, will present her book in conversation with Prof. Reem Bassiouney, American University in Cairo.
In 1512, Venetian ambassador Domenico Trevisan traveled to Cairo in an attempt to restore the strained relationships between the Serenissima and the Mamluk Sultanate of Egypt. His mission was described by one of the members of his retinue, Zaccaria Pagani, in a recently rediscovered, enticing travelog that provides a wealth of information about sailing techniques, cultural practices, psychological traits, and diplomatic protocols. Together with the testimony of people who participated in various capacities in the expedition, Pagani’s account provides evidence of the commercial, diplomatic and cultural ties that have linked populations across the Mediterranean and that reveal communication between, rather than a clash of, civilizations.