Doctoral Seminar with Giovanna Leone

A further session of the cycle of Doctoral Seminars of Communication Sciences and Cultural Studies will be held next March 29 in the ICS dedicated to the theme “Breaking down intergenerational silences: the case study of current narratives on Italian colonialism crimes”. In a joint initiative of CECS and the Department of Communication Sciences, the session will be attended by Giovanna Leone, a researcher at Sapienza University of Rome.

When new generations born after the end of an intergroup violence enter the democratic forum, the teaching of these historical facts of their national past, although threatening a positive image of their social identity, greatly contribute to intergroup reconciliation. Depending on the specific role played by their in-group, historical narratives of past national violence requires new generations to elaborate either a loss of moral decency, for perpetrators’ descendents, or a loss of the sense of control on one’s own destiny, for victims’ descendants. However, intergenerational silences often slow down or even revert reconciliation processes, making it impossible to turn a page nobody has really read.

The intergenerational silence about the Italian colonial crimes is a case study confirming that silence on the historical facts referred to massive in-group violence is a “banal” occurrence in intergenerational narratives. More in particular, in Giovanna Leone’s researches she explored how crimes committed by the Italian Army during the colonial invasion of Ethiopia are still self-censored in current Italian history textbooks and she observed emotional and cognitive reactions of young university students when exposed to a narrative breaking this long-lasting societal self-sensorship either in a clear and frank way or in a more mild and evasive one.

Psychologist (Sapienza University of Rome, 1977, cum laude) and Psychotherapist, Giovanna Leone is an associate professor of Social Psychology at the Department of Communication and Social Research (CORIS) of Sapienza University of Rome. She previously acted (1980-1994) as a psychologist and psychotherapist at the S. Spirito Hospital in Rome, where she co-founded the Unit for the prevention of psychological distress. Subsequently, from 1994 to 2005 she was a researcher and then an associate professor of Social Psychology at the University of Bari. She is a full member of various scientific associations, including AIP (Italian Association of Psychology – Social Psychology section), EASP (European Association of Social Psychology), International Society of Political Psychology (ISPP). Together with the historian Luigi Cajani, she represented Italy in the Management Committee (MC) of the COST Action IS1205 “Social psychological dynamics of historical representations in the enlarged European Union”.

Reviewer of many national and international journals and Associate Editor of the Journal of Social and Political Psychology, she currently teaches at Sapienza University of Rome Social Psychology and Communication, Political Psychology and Community Psychology. Her main research interests are focused on intergroup reconciliation and intergenerational narratives on past national violence.

In the afternoon, the workshop “Methodologies of visual analysis: social semiotics and multimodality”, with Silvana Mota-Ribeiro, will also be held in the ICS.

This lecture intends to embrace the universe of Social Semiotics and multimodality as forms of Critical Discourse Analysis, with the objective of effectively showing how crucial they are to unveil and identify meanings and discourses in various texts, namely visual and multimodal.

Silvana Mota-Ribeiro is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences, University of Minho, Portugal, and a researcher at CECS. She has a Ph.D. in Communication Sciences, specialization in Social Semiotics (European Ph.D., University of Minho and University of London). She published Women’s Portraits: Social Constructions and Visual Representations in Women (2005, Field of Letters) and contributed to the Dictionary of Feminist Criticism (2005, Afrontamento). She has been working in the area of gender and image and for several years has been developing research in the field of gender discourses and the Feminist Critical Discourse Analysis in articulation with Visual Socio-semiotics. She has published several articles highlighting those related to gender discourses in advertising images. She is the coordinator of the Gender & Sexualities Working Group of SOPCOM (Portuguese Association of Communication Sciences).

[Posted: 18-03-2019 | Changed: 27-03-2019]