Charles Speroni Endowed Chair

A photo of Valeria Finucci

Valeria Finucci

Valeria Finucci (Ph.D. University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign) is Professor of Romance Studies at Duke University and the 2016-2017 Charles Speroni Endowed Chair at the Department of Italian at the University of California, Los Angeles.  Her principal field of research is Renaissance theater, epic, romance, and treatise; women writers, medical and literary understandings of the body, Venetian culture, Renaissance fashion, medicine in early modern Italy, New World’s pharmacy, and psychoanalysis.  She is the recipient of numerous awards, most notably the National Humanities Center Fellowship (2013, 2009), the National Endowment for the Humanities (1999), and an RSA Research Grant from the Renaissance Society of America.  Finucci is the author of The Prince’s Body: Vincenzo Gonzaga and Renaissance Medicine (Harvard University Press, 2012), The Manly Masquerade: Masculinity, Paternity, and Castration in the Italian Renaissance (Duke University Press, 2003), and The Lady Vanishes: Subjectivity and Representation in Castiglione and Ariosto (Stanford University Press, 1992).  Her recent journal articles include “The Lady Anatomist: The Life and Work of Anna Morandi Manzolini” (2014), “The Virgins Body and Early Modern Surgeons” (2011), “La Italia de los ltimos aos del siglo XVI en el lbum ilustrado de estudiantes extranjero” (2010).  Finucci will be in residence at UCLA during winter quarter of 2017.

Charles Speroni Endowed Chair in Medieval and Renaissance Literature & Culture

Charles Speroni (1911-1984) was founder and first chairman of the Department of Italian at UCLA (1949-56), Dean of the College of Fine Arts, UCLA (1968-79), and he served as editor of the journal The Italian Quarterly. He was honored with the Alumni Award of Excellence for University Service by the UCLA Alumni Foundation (1984)


Prior Charles Speroni Visiting Professors

  • Zygmunt Baransky (University of Cambridge)
  • Lina Bolzoni (Università di Pisa)
  • Theodore Cachey (University of Notre Dame)
  • Paolo Cherchi (University of Chicago)
  • Paolo Fabbri (Universities of Bologna and Venice)
  • Monica Farnetti (University of Sassari)
  • Roberto Fedi (University for Foreigners, Perugia)
  • Giulio Ferroni (University of Rome)
  • Giorgio Ficara (University of Torino)
  • Valeria Finucci (Duke University)
  • Laura Giannetti (University of Miami)
  • Elisabetta Graziosi (University of Bologna)
  • Amilcare Iannucci (University of Toronto)
  • Alfonso Paolella (Suor Orsola Benincasa, Naples)
  • Gabriele Pedullà (University of Rome III)
  • Alfredo Stussi (Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa)
  • Natascia Tonelli (University of Siena)
  • Carlo Vecce (University of Naples, L’Orientale)
  • Stefano Velotti (University of Rome)
  • Sergio Zatti (University of Siena)