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[Commlist] Guglielmo Giannini: Entertainment and Political Activism conference

Mon Oct 28 09:34:25 GMT 2019

Università Statale, Milan, Italy in collaboration with Deakin University, Australia

*Guglielmo Giannini: Entertainment and Political Activism*

Venue: Università Statale, Milan, Italy.

Date: March 3-5, 2020.

Deadline for proposals: November 30, 2019


Gian Piero Brunetta, film historian, University of Padova

Giovanni Orsina, history of politics, Guido Carli University, Rome

Franco Perrelli, theatre historian, Università degli Studi di Torino

With the participation of Sabina Ciuffini, granddaughter of Giannini and famous media personality in Italy


Guglielmo Giannini (1891–1960) was an Italian journalist, playwright, scriptwriter, theatre director, film director, and politician.  Emerging as a young playwright in the 1920s, he went on to establish himself as an important figure in the development of the crime, noir and romance genres in Italian theatre in the 1930s and 1940s. The founder  and director of the film journal Kines, Giannini was also an important figure in the silent film industry, providing summations and intertitles for foreign films for the national audience. In the 1930s and 1940s, some of his better known theatrical works were adapted to the screen. ‘Anonima Fratelli Roylott’, adapted by Raffaello Matarazzo in 1936 as ‘Gli avvolti della metropoli’ is perhaps the best known example of this.

Establishing the weekly broadsheet L'uomo qualunque in 1944, Giannini went on to found and develop ‘qualunquismo’ as a populist political movement. Gaining 5.3% of the popular vote in 1946, Giannini became a founding member of the Italian Constituent Assembly that was tasked to write the constitution of the newly formed Italian Republic.

Subsequently involved again in both radio and television as a writer, performer, and political protagonist, Giannini remained a champion of interdisciplinary and transmedia production until his death in 1960.

In 2014 the Giannini family kindly made a range of Giannini materials available to Dr. Victoria Duckett (Deakin University). An online Omeka archive of over 10 000 pages of playscripts, cinematic treatments, political papers, and personal ephemera was built using these materials as its foundation (See Guglielmo Giannini: A digital archive of theatre, film, entertainment and political activism at <>).

Joining the keynote speakers listed above, confirmed panelists include:

Guglielmo Giannini: the politician (Irene Piazzoni)

Guglielmo Giannini: a man of the theatre (Maria Gabriella Cambiaghi, Stefano Locatelli, Maria Pia Pagani)

Guglielmo Giannini: working in the film industry (Raffaele De Berti, Cristina Formenti, Elena Mosconi)


We welcome contributions that consider

* Giannini and international political populism in history

* The legacy of Italian populism

* Questions of translation (particularly the circulation of Giannini’s plays in the UK and France )

* Giannini and the giallo in transnational contexts

* The post-war legacy of Giannini abroad

* Giannini’s cinema and international aesthetics

* Giannini and audiences abroad

Please send a 300-word abstract and bio in one document as an email attachment to (giannini2020 /at/ by 30th November 2019. Papers will be 20 minutes in length and can be presented in English or Italian.

All participants will be given access to the *Guglielmo Giannini: A digital archive of theatre, film, entertainment and political activism* archive.

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