[Press and Public Relations] University of Leicester to Launch Prestigious New Centre

February 2002

No 31

Centre for Tuscan Studies established

A major new Centre for the academic study of a region that has, for centuries, been popular with writers, artists and visitors is being launched at the University of Leicester.

Major political figures from the UK and Italy will attend the launch of the Centre for Tuscan Studies on Thursday February 14.

The event will include a public lecture, Massa Marittima Reveals its History, to be given by the Director of the Centre George Ferzoco. He said: “Throughout Europe, few regions over the centuries have had such cultural and commercial impact as Tuscany. Britain has, for centuries, had strong links with and been enchanted by this historic area.

“The Centre for Tuscan Studies recognises the distinctive and pervasive influence of Tuscany from the early Etruscans to the Renaissance through to the present millennium. It aims to deepen our understanding of the artistic, literary, social and economic aspects of the region.

“At the University of Leicester, there is considerable expertise and interest across the disciplines in this important region. Many of the University’s scholars devote much of their research to diverse aspects of Tuscan culture and history. This has led to the creation of the Centre, which will facilitate and enhance collaborative research both within the University and with scholars and institutions worldwide.

“The Centre is fully supported by the Faculty of Arts at the University of Leicester, where there is considerable interest across the disciplines in Tuscany. The Centre's Board of Studies is constituted of representatives from departments such as History of Art (Professor Alison Yarrington, Dr Thomas Frangenberg), Social and Economic History (Dr Peter Musgrave), English (Professor Gordon Campbell, Professor Martin Stannard), Museum Studies (Professor Susan Pearce), as well as Modern Languages (Professor Sharon Wood and Dott. Marina Spunta).

“The Centre will develop our knowledge and understanding of Tuscany through a variety of interdisciplinary perspectives. The relationship of Tuscany with adjacent regions and other countries, whether through trade, commerce or artistic and literary influence will also be explored by various projects.”

The Centre is forging partnerships with leading scholars, universities and institutions across the world including those in Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand and the USA. The Centre is also supported by the distinguished patronage of Professor Sir Frank Kermode and Dame Muriel Spark.

The public launch of the Centre will be in the presence of leading political and academic figures from the UK, Italy and beyond.  These dignitaries and scholars will include: Claudio Martini, President of the Region of Tuscany; Riccardo Nencini, President of the Regional Council of Tuscany; Luigi Amaduzzi, Italian Ambassador to the UK; Moira Macfarlane, British Consul in Florence; Nicole Bériou, member of the prestigious Institut Universitaire de France; Catherine Lawless, Director of Art History, University of Limerick; and Carolyn Muessig, Co-Ordinator for the Centre for Medieval Studies, University of Bristol.

Claudio Martini, President of Tuscany, said: “The creation of the Centre for Tuscan studies is an important initiative in making known the history, traditions and economy of Tuscany.”

Riccardo Nencini, President of the Regional Council of Tuscany, added: The University of Leicester’s new centre is an excellent undertaking, worthy of the greatest attention.”

Further enquiries: Ather Mirza, Director of Press, on + 44 (0)116 252 3335 or George Ferzoco on + 44 (0)116 252 2654 or + 44 (0)117 966 2514. 

The Centre for Tuscan Studies will encourage and facilitate interdisciplinary research through a range of activities including seminars, conferences, publications of articles and monographs.
Research projects include:

The Centre will establish a postgraduate programme on Tuscan Studies.

[Leicester University] [*] Administration [*] Press and Public Relations
Information supplied by: Barbara Whiteman
Last updated: 8 February 2002 10:30
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