Clara Stella

Clara Stella

PhD student in Italian

Summary: History of the book; Sixteenth-century anthologies ; Renaissance literature; Women and Gender Studies; The history of the circulation of texts; Lodovico Domenichi

My research

Under the supervision of Dr Federica Pich and Professor Brian Richardson, I am working on the PhD project Publishing Renaissance Women Poets: The contribution of Domenichi's anthology "Rime diverse d'alcune nobilissime et virtuosissime donne" (1559) // Poetesse del Rinascimento in tipografia: il contributo delle "Rime diverse d'alcune nobilissime et virtuosissime donne" (1559) a cura di Domenichi.

The aim of this thesis is to propose a thorough study of the Rime di donne, the first anthology dedicated entirely to female poets, edited by Domenichi and printed by Busdraghi in Lucca in 1559. The thesis investigates [1] Domenichi’s and Busdraghi’s role in shaping this collection, [2] their involvement in the querelle des femmes and [3] the content of the anthology. By analysing its texts and its structure, my thesis challenges the received critical view of the Rime di donne as simply a cabinet of poetic curiosities (Wunderkammer).

About me

I graduated from the University of Padua in 2011 with a BA in Modern Literature, under the supervision of Professor Sergio Bozzola. My BA thesis presented an analysis of Giacomo Noventa’s main work, Versi e Poesie, published in 1956, outlining the syntactic patterns and models used by the poet, whose results were confronted with Montale’s writing style. I then obtained my MA in Modern Philological Studies at the same University, under the supervision of Professor Ivano Paccagnella. My MA thesis focused on dialect literature of the Renaissance period, presenting a critical edition of an unpublished work of the Vicentian scholar and playwright Giovan Battista Calderari conserved in manuscript form. 

Academic Activities 

Since September 2015, I co-founded and I am co-directing Women's Paths: Rewriting Physical and Discursive Borders, a research group now sponsored by the Faculty of Arts and previously supported by the Leeds Humanities Research Institute (LHRI). Our research agenda of monthly seminar series, events and exhibitions investigates gender as a category that is rediscovering and redefining itself via a truly interdisciplinary approach. We have hosted an international Symposium ("A Room of Her Own": Writing Women Independece around the Globe, May 20 2016, University of Leeds) and the exhibition "Reclaiming the Darkest Corners": Discussing Women's Participation in Protest Marches (May 18 2017, The Treasures of the Brotherton Gallery), the latter in collaboration with the Feminist Archive North.


I am passionate about intersectionality, feminism and animal rights. I am part of the team of FCome: Femminismi in Italia e Oltre italo-british no-profit organisation and I contribute to its online maganize with articles on feminism, literature and gender issues. I also provide support on translations (English to Italian) and editing. In 2016 we launched #sexedispower campaign that called for mandatory sex and relationships education in Italian schools and universities. The campaign has been featured on local and national journals such as La Repubblica and The Huffington Post UK. 

Conference Papers

• Flattering Alliances in Lodovico Domenichi’s Rime diverse d’alcune Nobilissime et Virtuosissime Donne (1559) (University of Durham, Leeds and Manchester Joint PGR Day, University of Leeds, 13 November 2015).

• Shaping the Canon in Lodovico Domenchi’s Rime diverse d’alcune Nobilissime et Virtuosissime Donne  (1559) (Women and the Canon, Christ Church Oxford, 22-23 January 2016).

• Initial Consideration on the Ovidian Tradition in Lodovico Domenchi’s Rime diverse d’alcune Nobilissime et Virtuosissime Donne  (1559) (Renaissance Prototypes, International Conference, Oslo (The Norvegian Academy of Science and Letters). 28-30 September 2016).

• "Come a donna si conviene": alcune considerazioni sull’epistola amorosa nelle Rime diverse d’alcune nobilissime et virtuosissime donne (1559) (4° Congresso Internazionale SEMPER, Trento, 8-9 November 2016).

Conference and Event Organisation

• Workshop: Tools for Textual Representation. Language, Style and Expressive Strategies (University of Leeds, 12 June 2015).

• University of Durham, Leeds and Manchester Joint PGR Day (University of Leeds, 13 November 2015).

• A Room of Her Own: Writing on Women’s Independence around the Globe (University of Leeds, 16 May 2016).

• "Reclaiming the Darkest Corners": Discussing Women's Participation in Protest Marches (The Treasures of the Brotherton Gallery, May 18 2017).


• ‘Eugenio L. Giusti, The Renaissance Courtesan in Words, Letters and Images: Social Amphibology and Moral Framing (A Diacronic Perspective)', Annali d'Italianistica, 34 (2015), p. 96.

• ‘Unn Falkeid, Aileen A. Feng, eds, Rethinking Gaspara Stampa in the Canon of Renaissance Poetry', Annali d'Italianistica, 35 (2016), p. 222.


• Clara Stella, ‘Cinquecento (1500-1599)’, The Year’s Work in Modern Language Studies, 76 (2015), pp. 278-85.

• Clara Stella, ‘Cinquecento (1500-1599)’, The Year’s Work in Modern Language Studies, 77.1 (2017), pp. 195-203.

• Clara Stella, ‘La parola d'autrice tra propaganda e dissenso: alcuni appunti sulla questione politica nelle "Rime diverse d'alcune nobilissime et virtuosissime donne"’, in Vincenzo Busdraghi (1524?-1601): uno stampatore europeo a Lucca (Lucca: 2017), pp. 42-53.

• Clara Stella, ‘Tra "Vinegia" e Arno: la biografia in versi di Olimpia Malipiero', Il Campiello, 2 (2017), 7-31.


• ITAL1010 - Beginners Italian - Sem 1  and 2 (academic year 2016-2017)

• ITAL2011/15 and ITAL 2016/17 - Intermediate Italian Conversation classes - Sem 2 (academic year 2016)