1946-1953: After the end of the war, Italy finally gets its chance of becoming a modern nation. Political and historical contradictions, memories of the recent past, expectations for the imminent future, and social conflicts converge into some of the most important productions in the history of the film form, which historians will later regroup under the rubric `neo-realism.? Actors and film directors like Vittorio De Sica, Luchino Visconti, and Roberto Rossellini revolutionized the film form and function in a way that would later prove crucial throughout worldwide filmmaking. The course investigates the writings and the major feature films of these directors and of others to understand the aesthetic and ideological implications of their ways of representing reality. Course taught in English.