The Palio of Siena: Passion, Prayer, and Place with Dr. Kristin Stasiowski

The Palio of Siena: Passion, Prayer, and Place with Dr. Kristin Stasiowski


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The Palio of Siena is one of the most historic horse races in the world, yet for many visitors and guests, it is an event whose rituals remain hidden behind a veil of misunderstanding and confusion. Shrouded in mystery and infused with a rich, enduring mythology, the Palio is so much more than a race; to the Sienese, the Siena is an expression of life itself. This seminar will explore the rich historical, cultural, and spiritual contexts of Siena’s oldest horse race.

Led by an expert in Italian literature and culture, Kristin Stasiowski, Ph.D., this interactive seminar will introduce participants to the history, ritual, and culture of Siena as it is expressed through the Palio. We will explore and discuss the medieval foundations of the race; the rivalries and allegiances; the spiritual and religious connection to the Madonna, and much more.

Participants will develop a deep cultural awareness of the way that the identity of Siena is inherently tied to this twice-yearly event and will learn to look beyond the bold colors and bright sights of the race to understand the truly magnificent splendor of Siena’s most precious treasure. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with a nuanced understanding of and appreciation for the historical and cultural appreciation of the Palio of Siena.

Kristin Stasiowski, Ph.D. is the Assistant Dean of International Programs and Education Abroad for the College of Arts and Sciences and is also an Assistant Professor of Italian Language and Literature in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages at Kent State University. She received her Ph.D from Yale University in Italian Language and Literature and has taught Italian language, literature, cinema, history and culture in both the United States and Florence, Italy prior to arriving at Kent State. Her current research is on Italian author Clemente Rebora.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 4 reviews
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J
J.E.
Terrific Virtual Visit to Siena!
P
P.D.
M
M.O.
Learn it from someone who lives it
J
J.a.S.M.
The Palio

Customer Reviews

Based on 4 reviews
100%
(4)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
J
J.E.
Terrific Virtual Visit to Siena!
P
P.D.
M
M.O.
Learn it from someone who lives it
J
J.a.S.M.
The Palio