Event—Public Programming

Il Moro/The Moor: A Story of Alessandro de’ Medici

Delve into the life of Alessandro de’ Medici with Daphne Di Cinto, the writer, director, and producer of the Oscar-qualifying short film "Il Moro/The Moor."

Alberto Boubakar Malanchino as Alessandro de’ Medici in "Il Moro"

This program will be held in person at the Newberry.

Join us for a screening of Daphne Di Cinto’s award-winning short film, Il Moro/The Moor, which tells the story of Alessandro de’ Medici, the illegitimate son of a servant of Moorish descent and Pope Clement VII. When his father entrusts him with command of Florence, Alessandro is forced to question his identity and his place within the political dynasty known as the House of Medici. The film is in Italian with English subtitles.

After the screening, the Newberry’s Lia Markey and Yasmine Hachimi will moderate a Q&A with Di Cinto, who wrote, directed, and produced the film, which is currently longlisted for Oscars 2024.

This program is co-organized by the Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago.

This program is being held in conjunction with the Newberry exhibition Seeing Race Before Race, generously supported by the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Foundation, the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, and Pam and Doug Walter.

You can purchase a copy of the exhibition catalog, Seeing Race Before Race: Visual Culture and the Racial Matrix in the Premodern World, from the Newberry Bookshop.


Daphne Di Cinto is a Black Italian screenwriter, director, actor, and producer. She began her film and theater studies in Rome, where she focused on acting at Scuola di Cinema, while earning a degree in Communication Science from Roma Tre University. She attended the faculty of cinema at Sorbonne University in Paris before moving to New York for her master’s in fine arts at the Actors Studio Drama School. Currently based in London, Daphne is writer, director, and producer of the award-winning short film Il Moro/The Moor, her directorial debut. As an actor, she played the Duchess of Hastings in the Netflix series Bridgerton.

Lia Markey, Director of the Center for Renaissance Studies at the Newberry Library, is a scholar of Medici Florence who also teaches at the University of Chicago and Northwestern University. Her publications include a monograph, Imagining the Americas in Medici Florence, and several edited volumes and articles. She is co-curator of the Newberry exhibition, Seeing Race Before Race and co-edited with Noémie Ndiaye the related publication of the same name.

Yasmine Hachimi is Public Humanities Postdoctoral Fellow with the Center for Renaissance Studies at the Newberry Library. Her book project, Tudorotica, traces the eroticization of Tudor queens across centuries and genres, from 16th-century letters and plays to tv shows and fanfiction today. Her interests include how popular media and images of the premodern period challenge or affirm public understandings of the past, particularly with regard to sexuality and race. She has shared her work and expertise in several venues, including public-facing talks and publications, podcasts, and social media outlets. Yasmine is co-curator with Lia Markey, Rebecca Fall, Christopher Fletcher, and Noemie Ndiaye of the Newberry’s Seeing Race Before Race exhibition.

Cost and Registration

This program is free and open to all. Advance registration required.

Registration opens September 1.


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Past Public Programs

Check out video recordings of past Newberry public programs on our YouTube channel.



Seeing Race Before Race

Sep 08–Dec 30, 2023

Explore the roots of race from the Middle Ages to 1800.

Learn More

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