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Exploring Sicilian storytelling | Let’s talk about Cunto


What is Cunto and where does come from? The western world must recognise a debt with the more or less proximate East when dealing with cultural and ritual phenomena that have their roots in the Mediterranean milieu. One such encounter was through the clash between Christianity and Islam, which fed a chivalrous repertoire destined to be continually revived in Italian popular oral narratives.

Horizons have changed profoundly in the transition from pre-modern incarnations of the Cunto to the spectacular characteristics of its present form. Some elements, however, are neither replaceable nor easily negotiable, and remain a tangible sign of fidelity to an ancestral heritage. This is the case of the wooden sword, which held in the right hand marks the rhythm of the story with accents sustained by the beat of the Cuntista’s right foot.

We will explore and even put some of this in practice as part of this lively laboratory with Dario Tomasello from the University of Messina on Thursday, 3rd November at 6:30 pm at the University of Edinburgh (Project Room, 50 George Square). All welcome!

Dario Tomasello is Full Professor of Contemporary Italian Literature (L-FIL-LET / 11) at the University of Messina, where he coordinates the DAMS and founded the International Center for Studies on the Performativity of the Arts and Social Imaginaries (UNIVERSITEATRALI), which he has been directing since 2021. He translated and edited Richard Schechner’s manual, Introduction to Performance Studies (CUE Press, 2018). Since 2010, with Massimo Fusillo, he has directed the series of studies on the Performativity of the arts: AlterAzioni for the publishing house “Le Lettere”. Since 2011, he has directed, for “Editoria & Spettacolo”, the series FARETESTO dedicated to a repertoire of texts from contemporary Italian dramaturgy. Since 2011 he has directed the peer-reviewed scientific journal of category A: «Mantichora. Italian Journal of Performance Studies ». He was Visiting Professor at Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris III and has lectured in many Italian and international Universities and Institutions (including: Nanterre – Paris X; Columbia University; State University of New York; Yale University; New York University; Istituto Italiano di Culture of Chicago; Katholieke Universiteit Leuven; Gent University). His latest book is: Playtelling. Performance narrative nell’Italia contemporanea (Marsilio, 2021).


Languages: English, Italian, Sicilian. 

Please join us for a glass of Prosecco at the end.

Event sponsored by the Department of European Languages and Cultures, University of Edinburgh, and the Italian Cultural Institute, Edinburgh.

Prenotazione non più disponibile

  • Organizzato da: Department of European Languages and Cultures, University of Edinburgh, and the Italian Cultural Institute, Edinburgh.