Conversation with Hisham Matar
hosted by Shaul Bassi
Hisham Matar’s narrative and autobiographical works provide a valuable insight into the way in which literature can recount trauma and painting can be fundamental in facing a life that was scarred at an early age by the death of his father. This discussion brings together two Italian cities which symbolize Italian art, Siena as described by Matar in his latest work and Venice as depicted by Titian, a painter whose works were so important to the author in coming to terms with his loss. The discussion will touch on the way in which we can contemplate works of art in a way that goes beyond the generally expected academic approach; how paintings and painters can travel through time and change their meanings in the most unexpected and vital manner; how literature is able to describe art and how humanistic culture in general can become a diagnosis, a therapy, an exploration of the contemporary world and a crossroads of civilizations.
Shaul Bassi lectures in English literature at the Ca’ Foscari University in Venice, where he runs the Center for the Humanities and Social Change and coordinates the new masters’ degree in Environmental Humanities.
His publications include Shakespeare in Venice. Luoghi, personaggi e incanti di una città che va in scena (with Alberto Toso Fei, 2007), and he also edited Shakepeare’s Othello (2009), Essere qualcun altro. Ebrei postmoderni e postcoloniali (2011) and Shakespeare’s Italy and Italy’s Shakespeare. Place, ‘Race’, and Politics (2016). He was co-founder and director of the international literary festival Venezia Incroci di Civiltà.
Tuesday 10 March, 11:00
Università Ca’ Foscari
Venezia - Aula Mario Baratto, Dorsoduro 3246