La Dolce Vita – lecture on famous film by renowned film scholar

La Dolce Vita, made in 1960 and set in Rome, is one of the most famous films ever made. One of the world’s most distinguished scholars of film is to give a public lecture about it at Swansea University on 1 March.

Professor Richard Dyer of King’s College London will be giving the Roy Knight Lecture in Romance Studies.

The title of the lecture, which is open to all, is “La dolce vita as news and gossip”.

“La Dolce Vita”, directed by Federico Fellini, was an international and often scandalous hit that gave the world not only the term and idea encapsulated in its title but also 'paparazzi'.

It is a film about gossip and news that was itself news and is based in the news stories, fashionable people and actual fashions of its time.

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Picture:  Anita Ekberg and Marcello Mastrianni in a famous scene in Rome's Trevi Fountain, from La Dolce Vita

This talk looks at this whole process, the real and fictional images of Rome La dolce vita draws on, the way it relates to neo-realism in its use of non-actors, location shooting and episodic structures and the way that it transmutes them into symbol and spectacle.

La dolce vita is rooted in the real and yet refuses to present itself as realist, insisting on the way knowledge of the real is always literally mediated.

  • Venue: Faraday K, Singleton Campus, Swansea University (Faraday is building 8.1 on this map)
  • Wednesday 1 March, 4pm, followed by wine reception.
  • Open to all
  • Speaker: Professor Richard Dyer
  • Introduction: Professor Derek Connon
  • Vote of thanks : Dr Joanna Rydzewska

Professor Julian Preece, head of Modern Languages, Translation and Interpreting at Swansea University, said:

'Professor Richard Dyer is one of the world's most distinguished scholars of film and we are delighted that he has agreed to give this year's Roy Knight Lecture in Romance Studies.' 

Professor Dyer is the author of the classic Heavenly Bodies: Film Stars and Society (1987/2003) as well as books on the Italian film composer Nino Rota (2010), Pastiche (2006), In the Space of a Song (2011) and Now You See it: Historical Studies in Lesbian and Gay Film (1990/2003).

Roy Knight was Professor of French at Swansea 1950-74. The annual lecture named in his honour and funded from a bequest is on a subject related to the Romance languages taught at Swansea (French, Italian and Spanish).

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