Self-Directed Field Trip Possibilities (Journal Work)

UPDATED: June 7, 2018

Journal (40%, 400 points; 10%, 100 points each week; 2%, 20 points each entry)

You will keep a journal for four weeks, with each week holding five entries. Each entry should be roughly 200-300 words long. Alternatively, students may choose to compose one long entry for each week, which should be roughly 1000-1500 words long. Most of the focus is on the weeks’ readings and viewings (4/5 of the focus); another part of the focus should be an attempt to tie that unit to your touring experiences (1/5 of the focus). The purpose of the journal is two-fold: to prepare your thoughts for the exams, but also to tie your course and touring experiences together. The central question you are exploring is how does history stand within the geographical presence? More detailed directions, as well as a list of suggestions, will be provided at the start of class. NOTE: best journal entries may be added to the course blog, with your permission (and possibly some editing). Entries are evaluated on a weekly basis; each week’s worth of entries is due the following Monday.

Below is a list of suggestions for self-directed field trips to make for the fifth journal entry of each week.  Some are far and some are near; distance of the actual trip (and cost) will not influence the grade of the journal entry.  This list is incomplete!  If you have ideas for other trips, that you can make significantly relevant to the focus of the class, then take them.  What is relevant: objects found in Florence and other locations in Italy that are represented in the literature and/or films we are covering in class and that are directly relevant to the course lectures.


  • The Decameron
    • Basilica di Santa Maria Novella (Piazza di Santa Maria Novella)—This is where the story begins.
    • Ponte Vecchio—This bridge of stores was new at this time.
  • Maria Maddalena de’ Pazzi
  • Laura Cereta
  • Bathsua Makin
  • Moderata Fonte (Modesta Pozzo)
  • Shakespeare’s Strong Women in Italy
  • Taming of the Shrew
  • “Casa Guidi Windows”
    • Casa Guidi (near Boboli Gardens)
    • Villino Trollope (Piazza dell’Indipendenza)
    • Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s tomb (English Cemetery, Cimitero Accatolico; a.k.a. The Protestant Cemetery of Florence at Piazzale Donatello)
  • A Room with a View
  • The Enchanted April
  • Tea with Mussolini
    • via Tornabuoni
    • includes former location of Gran Caffé Doney, closed in 1986
    • location of British Consolate
  • Under the Tuscan Sun
  • General Focus:
      • Academia delle Arti del Disegno (Via Orsanmichele, 4, 50123 Firenze FI)
      • Uffizi Museum (Piazzale degli Uffizi, 6, 50122 Firenze FI)
      • Galleria Accademia (Via Ricasoli, 58/60, 50122 Firenze FI)
      • Museum Focus Advice 
        • Focus upon works of art that celebrate or otherwise highlight women. You may focus upon one work of art, or upon a group of works to complete your entry. You must tie your focus to the class somehow; you might even make the argument for how this focus might become a part of a supplemental course (a second course to the one you are currently taking).
        • Focus upon the works of a female artist. You must tie your focus to the class somehow; you might even make the argument for how this focus might become a part of a supplemental course (a second course to the one you are currently taking).
    • Villa la Colombaia (birthplace of Florence Nightingale)
    • Cloisters of Santa Croce (has a memorial for Florence Nightingale)


  • Siena
    • St. Catherine
      • Casa Santuario di Santa Caterina (The House of St. Catherine of Siena; Address: Via Costa di Sant’Antonio 6, 53100 Siena SI)
      • San Domenico Basilica (the church she went to while growing up).
    • Clare of Assisi
      • Basilica of St. Clare (Piazza Santa Chiara, 1, 06081 Assisi PG)
    • Tea with Mussolini
      • San Gimignano (The Town of Fine Towers)
    • Under the Tuscan Sun
      • Villa Laura (Bramasole, Cortona)


    • Santi Giovanni e Paolo—St. Catherine of Siena’s foot is enshrined there.
  • ROME
    • The Enchanted April
      • Castello Brown (Portofino Genoa)