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The Italian Novel 1900-1950
Course code: ITAL2115
Course unit value: 0.5.
This course is an overview of the Italian novel in the first half of the twentieth century. It looks at remarkable works of Italian literature responding to what has been called a “difficult modernity,” or Italy’s experience of profound transformations in society, politics, and culture. It thus examines novels by Luigi Pirandello, Aldo Palazzeschi, Giovanni Papini, Massimo Bontempelli, Alberto Savinio, Paola Masino, and Dino Buzzati, considering not only their narrative techniques, but also their literary careers as well as the broader cultural and historical context in which their works appeared.
Assessment: one 4000 word essay (100%).
Tutor: Dr Beatrice Sica.
Prescribed reading and set texts: the following is the list of primary sources that will be examined during the course. All are available in English translation:
- Luigi Pirandello, Uno, nessuno, e centomila (1909-1926). Many editions in Italian are available even in the Kindle format (English edition: One, No One, and One Hundred Thousand, translated by William Weaver, Boston, MA: Eridanos Press, 1990)
- Aldo Palazzeschi, Il codice di Perelà (1911), edited by Marco Marchi, Milan: SE, 2007 (English edition Man of Smoke, translated by Nicolas J. Perella and Ruggero Stefanini, New York: Italica Press, 1994)
- Giovanni Papini, Un uomo finito (1912). Many English and Italian editions, including POD editions, are available.
- Massimo Bontempelli, Il figlio di due madri (1929), Macerata, Liberilibri, 2008 (English edition: The Boy with Two Mothers, in Massimo Bontempelli, Separations: Mothers and Children, translated by Estelle Gilson, McPherson, 2004)
- Alberto Savinio, Tragedia dell’infanzia (1937), edited by Paola Italia, Milan: Adelphi, 2001 (English edition: Tragedy of Childhood, translated by John Shepley, Plainview, NY: Marlboro Press, 1991)
- Paola Masino, Nascita e morte della massaia (1938-45), Milan, ISBN, 2009, (English edition: Birth and Death of the Housewife, translated and with an Introduction by Marella Feltrin-Morris, Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 2009)
- Dino Buzzati, Il deserto dei Tartari (1940), edited by A. Garancini Costanzo, Milan: Mondadori, 2001 (English edition: The Tartar Steppe, translated by Stuart C. Hood, Edinburgh, Canongate Books, 2007)
- Robert S.C. Gordon, An Introduction to Twentieth-Century Italian Literature. A Difficult Modernity, London, Duckworth, 2005