Professor Spotlight: Francesca Calamita

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Dr. Francesca Calamita is a lecturer in Italian Studies who came to UVa in August 2014. She is originally from a small town close to Viterbo, which is near Rome. Calamita’s entire family still lives in Italy, but during breaks, she makes trips back home to see them. 

“I like Charlottesville. It is a small friendly town that welcomed me to the University. I really like the culture, and I enjoy looking at the landscapes,” said Calamita.

Prior to teaching at the University, Calamita had a teaching fellowship at the Victorian University of Wellington in New Zealand and a visiting fellowship at the University of London. New Zealand allowed her the chance to immerse herself in a culture that was much different than that of Europe.

Calamita’s research focuses on Italian women’s writing, cultural studies, gender, medical humanities and representation of the food and body in different genres. Here at UVa, she teaches beginning and intermediate Italian classes, as well as an ITTR/WGS course called “Eve’s Sinful Bite: Foodscapes in Women’s Writing, Culture, & Society”. This class allows students to look at how women have represented food and how food-related activities have played a role in the lives of women.

In the Fall of 2017, Calamita will be teaching a course called “My Body, My Choice: Women’s Rights in Modern Italy”, which will focus on feminist movements and controversial issues, like abortions and contraceptives in modern Italian literature, films and art.

“This course will look at the past and see what it can teach us about now and the patriarchal backlash,” said Calamita.

In her free time, Calmita watches movies at the Violent Crown located on the Downtown Mall and eats at some of the many restaurants that Charlottesville has to offer, such as Bang! On grounds, she enjoys attending the film series put on by the Institute of World Languages.


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