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27 Works

Ortese and the theory of difference in Il porto di Toledo

Cosetta Seno
Anna Maria Ortese is considered today as one of the greatest women writers of all times. This essay analyzes her contribution to Italian Women’s Literature within the context of her relationship with two major waves of the Italian Feminist Movement: that of the 1970s, centered mainly on the idea of equality, and that of the 1980s, centered on the idea of sexual difference. While writing her  autobiography Il porto di Toledo Ortese became aware that the very experience...

The Narrative Function of Clothing in Elena Ferrante’s Troubling Love

Carmela Pesca
Elena Ferrante’s first published novel Troubling Love deals with the dark side of the mother-daughter relation as no other of her works. The narration takes the form of a painful assembly of events, dealing with both rupture and continuity between the narrator Delia and the story’s protagonist, her mother Amalia. Essentially, Delia sews images together as they emerge from her visceral, rather than intellective or even imaginative revisiting of her childhood and adolescence. Amalia’s drowned body...

Casting Sound: Modality and Poetics in Gabriella Ghermandi's "Regina di fiori e di perle"

Eveljn Ferraro & Laura Dolp
This article investigates Gabriella Ghermandi’s novel Regina di fiori e di perle (2007) through two disciplinary perspectives: the first investigates music as a historical and social practice through historical observation of Ghermandi’s characters who reference Ethiopian oral traditions; and the second explores the contemporary dynamics of migration and transnational identity through textual analysis that critiques how storytelling practices are carried into an Italian context. We argue that the novel reflects a dissemination of oral memory...

L'orrore degli stupri di guerra nelle opere di Annie Vivanti

Nunzia Soglia
This contribution analyzes two works by Annie Vivanti written during World War I: the drama L’invasore, and the novel derived from it, Vae Victis!. The texts were based on sexual violence perpetrated by Germans in Belgium at the beginning of the conflict, historical events that provoked widespread indignation. More specifically, the author considers the choices of women facing pregnancies that resulted from the violence, thereby inserting herself in the extremely delicate and controversial problem of...

Wellington 2013 – «There’s no place like home»: The Anxiety of Mobility in the Works of Louise DeSalvo

Bernadette Luciano
Le emozioni conflittuali associate all’idea di casa e la tensione tra mobilità e fissità costituiscono il cuore delle opere autobiografiche che tracciano la trasformazione della scrittrice italoamericana Louise DeSalvo, da ragazza proletaria a privilegiata «nomade intellettuale» (Bruno 2002, 404). Il saggio si fonda sulla teorizzazione della casa come spazio e idea geografici e sulla sua relazione con diverse forme di mobilità. L’immigrazione, l’esilio, il transnazionalismo, il turismo e lo spostamento creano per la casa uno...

La narrazione dell’Oriente e la svolta letteraria di Cristina Trivulzio Belgiojoso: il testo-laboratorio dei "Souvenirs dans l’exil"

Flavia Caporuscio
This article analyzes Cristina Trivulzio Belgiojoso’s literary turning-point by considering "Souvenirs dans l’exil" (1850) as the transitional book representing a fundamental shift in the author’s writing process. Actually, this book, which is culled from a collection of letters that the writer sent while in exile to her French friend, Caroline Jaubert, reveals a hybrid writing characterized by a contamination of genres within the formal frame of private letters. In light of this internal architecture, "Souvenirs...

Wellington 2013 – Of marriages and happy endings: A reading of Clotilde Masci’s "Vigilia nuziale"

Daniela Cavallaro
In "Vigilia nuziale", a 1952 play by Clotilde Masci (1918-1985), the protagonist Cristina, at almost 30 years of age, is about to marry the son of her father’s best friend – a man she barely knows. On the eve of the wedding, however, she claims first to her family and then to the police that she stole a ring from the jeweller’s. After the confession of the true thief proves her innocence, the play ends...

Wellington 2013 – Tastefulness: Fashion, Food, Lust and Domesticity in Matilde Serao’s "La virtù di Checchina" (1884)

Francesca Calamita
Throughout Western culture the relationship between women and food has often been seen as a metaphor for something else. From the biblical episode of Eve and the apple to postmodern society, women’s eating habits have been perceived not only as natural acts of self-nourishment but also as a display of affection, sexuality and tendency to sin. Similarly, women’s clothing style has been read as an instrument of self-expression and a key marker of gender identity...

Il chiarore che deforma – Processi deformanti nella poetica di Amelia Rosselli

Elena Carletti
The poetry of Amelia Rosselli is deeply phenomenological and stems from a tumultuous reality, a state in constant becoming. The chaos of the external reality is interiorized, and subsequently possessed, through a process of deforming filtration. This paper begins by investigating phenomenological implications in the poetics of Amelia Rosselli, which developed in line with similar approaches both in Italy, in the theories of the Gruppo ‘63, and abroad, in an essay written by Charles Olson. Art...

Identità e alterità nel romanzo "Amiche per la pelle" di Laila Wadia

Laura Lazzari
The article focuses on issues related to identity and representation of otherness in Laila Wadia’s novel "Amiche per la pelle". In the imaginary building of Via Ungaretti in Trieste, where the story takes place, live different types of people belonging to various nationalities: an Italian man, an Albanian couple, and Bosnian, Chinese and Indian families. The pluralism and diversity that characterize the main characters of the novel picture a complex description of the immigrants that...

Wellington 2013 – «Solo le storie sono capaci di colmare gli squarci del dolore. Solo le storie ci aiutano a sopravvivere»: Autobiographic Traces in the Narratives of Dacia Maraini

Alex Standen
The publication of Dacia Maraini’s "Bagheria" in 1993 and "La nave per Kobe" in 2001 indicate a significant foray into life writing by the author, and the beginning of a more concerted move towards self-representation, which continues in texts such as "La grande festa" (2011) and "Chiara di Assisi – Elogio della disobbedienza" (2013). It is, however, a genre that Maraini had previously admitted to being challenging for her to confront. This article considers a...

Sguardo di madre – Ordine simbolico, colpa e liberazione in "Una bambina e basta" di Lia Levi

Andrea Sartori
This book by Lia Levi can be read both as a document about the persecution of the Jews in Italy, and as a testimonial account of a difficult childhood. Here the young protagonist is in search of herself, in a world permeated with chauvinist rhetoric. This article first analyses the guilt-inducing mechanisms of the symbolic order of anti-Semitism, and reveals the similarities between this process and ideologies of gender domination. The article then borrows the...

Saffo tra poesia e leggenda. Fortuna di un personaggio nei secoli XVIII e XIX, a cura di Adriana Chemello, Padova, Il Poligrafo, 2012, pp. 353

Luca Piantoni
The review discusses "Saffo tra poesia e leggenda. Fortuna di un personaggio nei secoli XVIII-XIX", edited by Adriana Chemello (Padova, Il Poligrafo, 2012, pp. 353). The volume is an anthology of texts that are accompanied by critical commentaries and a historical, critical and philological introduction. The anthologised texts are "Saffo" by Maria Fortuna (1776, with commentary by Salvatore Puggioni), "Faoniade" by Vincenzo Maria Imperiale (1780, with commentary by Francesca Favaro), "Vita di Saffo" by Bianca...

L’œuvre d’Igiaba Scego, femme et écrivaine : une vision interculturelle de l’héritage postcolonial

Vittorio Valentino
Un nouveau phénomène littéraire, encore jeune et restreint, est en train de se développer en Italie : celui des enfants de migrants, nés en Italie ou arrivés en bas âge, qui s’initient à l’écriture. Ces écrivains évoluent à l’intérieur de la société italienne, présentent des origines parfois plus lointaines que les confins de notre Méditerranée – congolais, somaliens – ils rejettent l’assignation à une seule identité qui les enfermerait dans une dimension qui n’est pas...

Merging Territories: (Anti)Feminism in Neera’s "Una giovinezza del secolo XIX"

Ioana Raluca Larco
This article reflects on the ideological ambivalence of Neera’s autobiographical work, "Una giovinezza del secolo XIX" (1919): on the one hand, the narrator openly disapproves, in the name of moral values and tradition, of those trends meant to expand women’s domain beyond the domestic space through education and paid labor; on the other, the «narrated I» is insistently depicted as victim of her limiting domestic space. Such duality brings to mind the notion of ‘contradictory...

The Caetani-Mathews Papers: Introducing René Char to the American Readership

Lorenzo Salvagni
Scopo principale dello studio è contribuire alla conoscenza dell'attività di Marguerite Caetani, editore e mecenate moderna e cosmopolita, nel contesto della storia letteraria del secondo dopoguerra. "Hypnos Waking", la prima raccolta di poesie di René Char apparsa negli Stati Uniti, viene pubblicata da Random House nel 1956. Questo volume, iniziatore di una lunga serie di studi su Char negli USA, era tradotto dal francesista americano Jackson Mathews e comprendeva opere precedentemente pubblicate in «Botteghe Oscure», la...

Wellington 2013 – Ippolita rinascimentale: le Amazzoni americane nell’epica italiana

Carla Aloé
This paper analyses the mythography of ‘New World Amazons’ as it appears in Renaissance Italian epic poems, tracing perceptions of the myth from the discovery of America to the first half of the seventeenth century. The first part of the article documents the literary history of such legends, focusing in particular on the delayed advent of American Amazons in Italian verse. One reason for this, I argue, is that poets were unable to distance themselves...

L’‘espace’ letterario in "Stella mattutina" di Ada Negri

Lucia Vedovi
In 1920, Ada Negri announced the publication of her Buildungsroman "Stella mattutina" with the following words: «"Stella mattutina" è la storia interiore della mia vita dai sette ai diciassette anni, in terza persona. Vi ho scolpito la figura di mia madre». By combining Julia Kristeva’s theoretical conclusions on semiotic, as expressed in "Revolution in Poetic Language" (1984) and "Language – the Unknown: an Initiation into Linguistics" (1989), and Johanna Drucker’s concept of 'espace', as formulated...

Recensione a Dacia Maraini, "L’amore rubato", Milano, Rizzoli, 2012

Sibilla Destefani
"L’amore rubato", Dacia Maraini’s latest book, investigates the problem of violence against women, through the literary representation of violence itself. Through eight short stories, Maraini portrays children and women who have been victims of violence; violence perpetrated inside and outside the family, in a society which appears unable to distinguish love from possession. In this article, rather than summarizing the novel, I propose an interpretation of the book. Starting from some considerations on the problem...

"Dopo il divorzio" (1902, 1905, 1920) di Grazia Deledda: 'opus in fieri' sul riso del moderno

Margherita Heyer-Caput
Grazia Deledda, insignita del Premio Nobel per la letteratura nel 1926, è stata generalmente considerata una delle voci maggiori della scrittura al femminile di primo Novecento, sospesa tra Verismo e Decadentismo e spesso tacciata di regionalismo. Tuttavia la critica italiana e nordamericana più recente ha cominciato a sottolineare la rilevanza della narrativa deleddiana nel discorso sul moderno. Il romanzo "Dopo il divorzio", generalmente trascurato dalla critica, rappresenta un caso esemplare della riflessione deleddiana sulla crisi del...

Recensione a "L’altra metà del Risorgimento. Volti e voci di patriote venete", a c. di Nadia Filippini e Liviana Gazzetta, Verona, Cierre, 2011.

Giulia Brian
This is a review of the recently published work by Nadia Filippini e Liviana Gazzetta "L’altra metà del Risorgimento. Volti e voci di patriote venete" (Cierre 2011). The book is divided into two sections: the first one presents the portraits of thirty-three patriot women, while the second is a precious archive of documents written by them. Thanks to the biographies, the documents and the ‘dynamic’ structure of the book, the reader can easily follow the...

Recensione a Anilda Ibrahimi, "Non c'è dolcezza", Torino, Einaudi, 2012.

Silvia Camilotti
I review the novel "Non c’è dolcezza" (Einaudi 2012) by Anilda Ibrahimi, an Albanian writer who lives in Italy and writes in Italian. In her previous novels – "Rosso come una sposa" (Einaudi 2008) and "L'amore e gli stracci del tempo" (Einaudi 2009) – the author focuses her attention on the Balkans civil war and Albanian history.  One of the main topics of her writing is the female condition in her country of origin: in her...

«altrelettere»: rivista di critica letteraria sulla scrittura delle donne in Italia

Dacia Maraini
Articolo di presentazione della rivista «altrelettere» di Dacia Maraini.

Luigia Codemo: appunti per una biografia intellettuale

Adriana Chemello
La narrativa di Luigia Codemo ha una filiazione diretta dal romanzo storico manzoniano, da cui mutua l’interesse per le «genti meccaniche e di piccolo affare», ma attinge anche al vasto repertorio delle forme brevi, degli exempla, dei racconti morali, delle “storie vere” che sembrano riprese dalle colonne della «Gazzetta Veneta» di Gozzi, delle goldoniane chiacchiere da campiello, senza trascurare le storie sentimentali e romantiche dei racconti d’appendice. La cifra della sua scrittura sta in questa...

Sulla soglia: la narrativa di Maria Messina

Maria Serena Sapegno
This article discusses all of Maria Messina's writings. It starts by positioning the author’s choices amidst the new potential subjects brought up by the rapid modernization process that took place in Italy at the beginning of the 20th century. Maria Messina seems to focus especially on the crisis of the patriarchal system and on the conflicting forms by which new emerging subjects, particularly women, express themselves. While she describes their painful movement towards an identity,...

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