Aliza Wong – Reimagining Old and New Worlds: The American Academy in Rome


Aliza Wong – Reimagining Old and New Worlds: The American Academy in Rome

Black and white photo of three light skinned women in a library in 1933

The AAR Library in 1933, from left: Elizabeth Mendell, wife of trustee and 1950 Resident Clarence Mendell; classicist and 1932–34 Classical Summer School participant Mary A. Sollmann; and Miss Chambers (AAR Photographic Archive)

For 130 years, the American Academy in Rome has opened its doors to American artists, architects, sculptors, art historians, writers, composers, designers, archaeologists, historians, and many other creative thinkers in the arts and the humanities who found inspiration and innovation in the Eternal City. And while certainly the Rome Prize Fellows reveled in the historic setting, the reality of the chaotic beauty of Rome, they also celebrated the idea of Rome, the breadth of possibilities and impossibilities rendered imaginable because of where we are, the air we breathe, the streets we walk.

The American Academy in Rome is one of the only national academies to welcome not only scholars and artists of its own nation but also global creatives, including those from our host country of Italy. And in welcoming this pantheon of Fellows, the American Academy was the homebase in Rome for 622 Guggenheim Fellowships, 74 Pulitzer Prizes, 53 MacArthur Fellowships, 26 Grammy awards, 5 Pritzker Prizes, 9 Poet Laureate appointments, and 5 Nobel Prizes.

This conference will be held in Italian.


Aliza S. Wong, the current director of the American Academy in Rome, is a professor of history and Honors College at Texas Tech University in Lubbock. Her research focuses on modern Italy and the Mediterranean, with particular emphasis on issues of race, nation, culture, and identity. She has won numerous awards for teaching and research, as well as receiving recognition for her work in promoting diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, including being named the Lubbock YWCA Woman of the Year for her work in social justice (2018) and a Minnie Stevens Piper Professor by the Foundation (2019).

Date & time
Thursday, April 18, 2024
6:00 PM
Palazzo Venezia
Sala del Refettorio
Via Plebiscito, 118
Rome, Italy
Security notice

For access to the Academy, guests will be asked to show a valid photo ID. Backpacks and luggage with dimensions larger than 40 x 35 x 15 cm (16 x 14 x 6 in.) are not permitted on the property. There are no locker facilities available. You may not bring animals (with the exception of seeing-eye/guide dogs).


The Academy is accessible to wheelchair users and others who need to avoid stairs. Please email us at if you or someone in your party uses a wheelchair or other mobility devices so that we can ensure the best possible visitor experience. If you are someone with a disability or medical condition that may require special accommodation, please also email us at