Joseph D. Falvo received his Ph.D. in Italian from the Johns Hopkins University in 1986 with a specialization in the Italian Renaissance. He has published numerous articles on Dante, Boccaccio, Machiavelli, Della Casa and a book on Baldesar Castiglione entitled The Economy of Human Relations. Castiglione's "Libro del Cortegiano" (Peter Lang, 1992). He recently contributed with entries on humanist writers to the six volume Encyclopedia of the Renaissance (1999) published by Charles Scribner's Sons in association with the Renaissance Society of America. He is currently working on a second book entitled Tradition and Innovation in Courtesy Literature: Education and Politics in Early Modern Italy, and on another project dealing with the study of ceremony and ritual in Boccaccio's Decameron. He has been a participant at many conferences and colloquia, delivering papers on various aspects of Italian literature and culture, including the Italian cinema. He is recipient of several honors, including an award from the Folger Institute, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.