The 9th International Symposium of Anglo-Italian Studies, titled 'Britain and Italy: Literary and Cultural Relations,' was recently held at the University of Malta Valletta Campus. Prof. Dominic Fenech, Dean of the Faculty of Arts, gave the opening speech in which he warmly commended the excellent working relationship that exists between the Faculty of Arts and the Institute of Anglo-Italian Studies. He added that such a conference was particularly relevant given Malta’s history and culture which brings together the bonds that link British and Italian cultural relationships.
In his opening remarks, Prof. Peter Vassallo, the Chairperson of the Institute, remarked that this conference was a particularly special one since it marked the 25th anniversary of the Institute. Keeping Malta as the epicenter of Anglo-Italian studies was a commitment that the Institute has held dear since its very inception, added Prof. Vassallo, who also paid tribute to the late and still very warmly esteemed Rev. Prof. Alfonse Sammut and his deep commitment towards Anglo-Italian Studies. Prof. Gloria Lauri-Lucente, Director of the Institute, thanked Prof. Vassallo for his unwavering support towards the Humanities and the Institute and recalled how Rev. Prof. Sammut, not only set the wheels in motion for the establishment of the Institute but also sparked in her the interest in Petrarch and English Petrarchism.
The two-day biennial conference was attended by a number of eminent speakers from the UK, Italy and America, who discussed a plethora of topics, ranging from classic literature to contemporary literature, from translation studies to music and cinema. These papers will feature in the forthcoming edition of the Journal of Anglo-Italian Studies that will be published early next year.
The next international conference of Anglo-Italian Studies will be held in Malta in 2018 and will be the 10th of its kind to take place on the island.