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Elsa Filosa Awarded Prize at MLA 2024

The Modern Language Association of America awarded Elsa Filosa, assistant professor of the practice in Italian at Vanderbilt University, an honorable mention in the Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for Italian Studies for her book Boccaccio’s Florence: Politics and People in His Life and Work, published by the University of Toronto Press.

The prize was one of twenty-two awards that were presented on 5 January 2024 during the association’s annual convention held in Philadelphia.

The committee’s citation for Filosa’s book reads:
Elsa Filosa’s Boccaccio’s Florence: Politics and People in His Life and Work makes new and important contributions to Boccaccio’s essential political dimension, resulting in an expanded context for viewing him as a writer and as a person. The book provides a wealth of detail about the Florentine conspiracy of 1360, looking both at the conspirators who were directly punished and at the resulting changes in the city of Florence. It is from this perspective (cogently combined with earlier Boccaccian experiences) that Filosa rereads Boccaccio’s political history, which is then very usefully tied to his various late literary works. In this context, Boccaccio’s treatments of Petrarch and especially of Dante are of particular importance.