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Excellent location — rated 9. Lock in a great price for Casa Minotti — rated 9. Enter dates to get started. Ronald, Netherlands. Maurizia, Italy. Silvia, Italy. Alessandra, Brazil. Brigitta, Germany. Giorgia, Italy. Stefano, Italy. Gerhard, Germany. Mauro, Italy. Paolo, Italy. One of our top picks in Gubbio. Located in Gubbio, Casa Minotti has accommodations with free WiFi, air conditioning and access to a garden with an outdoor swimming pool. Some of the units have cable flat-screen TV, a fully equipped kitchenette with a fridge, and a private bathroom with a bath and a a hair dryer.

Guests at the farm stay can enjoy a buffet or an American breakfast. The restaurant at Casa Minotti specializes in Italian cuisine. The nearest airport is Sant'Egidio, 31 miles from the accommodation, and the property offers a Airport shuttle additional charge. Couples in particular like the location — they rated it 9. This property is also rated for the best value in Gubbio! Guests are getting more for their money when compared to other properties in this city. Casa Minotti has been welcoming Booking. We're sorry, but there was an error submitting your comment. Please try again. Good for couples — they rated the facilities 9.

Italian, Vegetarian, Gluten-free, American, Buffet. Perfect Coffee! Free parking. Sorry — there was an error submitting your response. Rooms fully equipped, great home made diner and breakfast. Really enjoyed our s Prices you can't beat! WiFi is available in all areas and is free of charge. Free public parking is available at a location nearby reservation is not needed. It looks like something went wrong submitting this. Try again? Cancellation and prepayment policies vary according to accommodations type.

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Please enter the dates of your stay and check what conditions apply to your preferred room. The maximum number of extra beds, cribs, and children allowed in existing beds depends on the room you pick. Double-check your selected room for the maximum capacity. Age restriction. Cards accepted at this property. Casa Minotti accepts these cards and reserves the right to temporarily hold an amount prior to arrival.

Real stays. Real opinions. Read more. There was a problem loading the reviews. Try again. Open your list. Really enjoyed our stay would recommend to everyone who enjoys great views, relaxing and warm hospitality. Alles sehr liebevoll gestaltet. Kommen gerne wieder. Struttura ristrutturata di recente con molto buon gusto. Camera estremamente accogliente. La proprietaria e lo staff sono stati molto gentili e disponibili. Colazione ottima. Top location with amazing view, beautiful garden and very warm and kind staff.

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Colazione ottima e abbondante Un grazie particolare alla signora Oda e a tutto il personale con la speranza di tornarci Paolo, Italy. Staff 9. Previous image of the property Next image of the property. Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property Image of the property.

Casa Minotti 9. Ronald Netherlands. Maurizia Italy. Silvia Italy. Alessandra Brazil. Brigitta Germany. Giorgia Italy. Stefano Italy. Gerhard Germany. Mauro Italy.

Paolo Italy. There's a shared lounge at this property and guests can go cycling nearby. What would you like to know? Enter your feedback I already have a booking with this property Submit. Thank you for your time Your feedback will help us improve this feature for all of our customers Close. This highly original and complex novel concludes—in perfectly sym- metrical fashion—with the words spoken by Gherardo Orsi to Giovanni Verga.

Here the reader finds the solution to another couple of the micro- mysteries presented in the course of the novel: the ownership of the beautiful female leg that had excited the poetic imagination of Orsi, Tar- chetti, Praga and Camillo and Arrigo Boito in the laboratory of their scientist friend; and the reason behind the lack of evidence of the corres- pondence between Orsi and Verga.

Against the flow of this seemingly positive end- ing and its overt attempts to bring the novel to closure, however, the reader becomes aware of certain perverse contradictions. You can step up from horoscopes to tarot cards, as you do from joints to hard drugs, right? The manufactured women in the novel are indeed patently unreal, but what if they were a simple decoy to induce the reader to consider everyone else real by contrast?

Besides resolving the ostensible crimes and revealing the identities and motives of the perpetrators, the novel clearly does not provide final answers or conclusive statements, ending instead with a resounding echo of the uncanny. Claudia Salvatori does not abide by the statutory rules of the giallo, she does not practise crime fiction with the aim of constructing a universe in which order finally prevails over chaos, as the detective does over the criminal.

I want to push my characters and my situations to the limit, so that I am not lulled into a comfortable sense of security. This is what I have to give my readers. Quel treno da Vienna. Milan: Rizzoli —. Il fazzoletto azzurro, Milan: Rizzoli —. Una ragazza per la notte, Milan: Rizzoli —. Milan: Rizzoli Baudrillard, Jean. In Waugh ed. Literary Theory and Criticism: Boito, Arrigo. Tutti gli scritti. Piero Nardi. Milan: Mondadori Butler, Judith.

Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press: —. New York: Routledge Camille, Michael. Nelson and Richard Schiff eds. Critical Terms for Art History. Story and Discourse. Venice: Marsilio Crovi, Raffaele. Le maschere del mistero. Florence: Passigli Dal Farra, Mariella. Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. The Logic of Sense. Nel nome di Ishmael. Milan: Mondadori. In the name of Ishmael New York: Miramax Books, transl.

New Left Review Lacan, Jacques. In Paul du Gay, et al eds. Identity: a reader. London: Sage: La Porta, Filippo. Roma Noir , Tendenze di un nuovo genere metropolitano. Rome: Robin: Lucarelli, Carlo. Il giorno del lupo. Bologna: Granata Press —. Via delle Oche. Almost Blue. Turin: Einaudi —. Indagine non autorizzata.


New York: Modern Library, transl. Literary Theory and Criticism: Rimmon-Kenan, Shlomith. Narrative Fiction. Contemporary Poetics. London: Routledge Salvatori, Claudia. Sublime anima di donna. Milan: Marco Tropea Viale, Antonella. The Lost Dimension. New York: Semiotext e Publishers —. The Art of the Motor. Literary Theory and Criticism. And so you can never place it, you can never find a definite point that determines an environment. This is why landscape cannot be delimited but has a kind of circularity of vision that never ends.

Unless otherwise specified, all translations are mine.

Common to their work is an empathetic rediscovery of everyday places and a deep sense of displacement and exile. The key work by Ghirri, which also attests to his collaboration with Celati, is Il profilo delle nuvole [Profile of clouds] , with texts by Celati. On this see my essay in Chantler and Dente , forthcoming. Sincere thanks to the Ghirri Estates for allowing me to re- produce here four photographs Figs.

In Italy, as abroad, this debate has crossed many boundaries between disciplines, arts, and theoretical and socio-political approaches, as philosophers have turned to the question of space, while geographers have looked to philosophy and fiction, and artists have found increasing inspiration in place and landscape.

This approach has often concentrated on the aesthetics of land- scape, giving rise to a critical line of thought that links the seminal work of Assunto to that of Bonesio, and of Venturi Ferriolo. Drawing on these complementary debates, the present study seeks to put forward an eclectic approach, one that accounts critically for different perspectives, in texts ranging from photography to fiction. As di Monte suggests cover , the intrinsic liminality of land- scape helps to explain its current critical popularity and makes it an ideal subject for interdisciplinary analyses and for evaluating new approaches and methodologies.

This view is clearly reflected in the work of Ghirri, Celati and their fellow artists, whose interest in the question of space goes hand in hand with their interdisciplinary approach fiction and photo- graphy, but also cinema and the visual arts and provides them with a locus in which to experiment with new creative forms and to reflect on the contemporary arts. While placing themselves within this tradition see Orengo in Sironi: , our artists draw on different influences in their attempt to question accepted notions of space, place and landscape.

Asked by Quintavalle about his preference for the Po valley, Ghirri suggested that it went beyond the personal, and was, rather, rooted in the elusive character of this landscape, seemingly devoid of any peculiar feature other than that of everyday, inhabited space Quintavalle The stories of Daniele Benati, for instance, capture the vagueness of this land- scape and the changeable moods of its inhabitants, torn between a sense of belonging to a deeply rural environment and the desire to escape towards modernity, in particular to Northern Europe or the United States.

What draws these writers and artists together, as we have noted, is a deep empathy with the spatial and narrative dimension, and particularly with a fast-changing, blurred exterior such as that symbolized by the Po valley. It emerges not only in their individual work, but also, and perhaps most strikingly, in their many collaborative projects, most of which led by Ghirri or Celati who have sought to foster the development of an artistic community around them.

Ghirri subsequently promoted the exhibition Esplorazioni sulla via Emilia [Explorations on the via Emilia], which extended the collaboration to Cavazzoni, Messori and Sebaste, as well as other writers, geographers and economists,6 and this was followed by a series of key works, most importantly Il profilo delle nuvole. Trends in Contemporary Italian Narrative 57 photographers see Quintavalle 32 and Mussini , but also on Celati,7 and through him, many contemporary writers; among the first were Benati, Cavazzoni, Messori and Sebaste, whose early work Celati promoted and published in Narratori delle riserve [Voices from the Reserves] Most of these writers also joined Celati in the short- lived editorial experience of Il semplice and some of them participated in his documentaries on the Po valley.

It is from this perspective that we move on to discuss the written and visual narratives of the Po valley, focusing on certain key images employed to explore the present socio-cultural con- dition: the image of space as void and vagueness in Ghirri and Celati, and the metaphor of the map which all these artists use.

The most striking characteristic of the Po valley is its flatness, which, together with its apparent lack of interesting features and its almost imper- ceptible horizon, makes it appear as a void and boundless space. We focus on the limits, margins and borders that form the countryside and the structures of our reality, which, at least in the photographic representation, are marginalized. This is certainly the newest work on the anthropology of landscape that has been produced in Italy. This attitude generates an elementary attention to colour or light phenomena that are so indefinite as to make the notion that there are actually things that can be documented seem rather shaky.

Such phenomena are the artifices of vagueness, that ancient term of Italian art used to describe things such as the clouds, the sky and the horizon. The novelty of contemporary space, according to Celati, is that the things that seemed obvious, the things we look at without really seeing, become a series of affective modes that can be conveyed only with uncertainty Celati This endeavour to re-assess the aesthetics of landscape emerges, nota- bly, in the key role that maps play in their work. Maps openly problem- atize the question of representing space as they reveal the impossibility of visualizing it, given the intrinsic changeability and subjectivity of any landscape, as well as any representation of it.

Ghirri , upper case as in the original. Trained as a surveyor, Ghirri was always fascinated by maps and used them in his pictures as a metanarrative device to inspire reflection on the act of visualization and photographic representation. In the postscript to this work, Ghirri concluded that carto- graphic signs, because of their conventionality, bring us back to all the infinitely possible readings even within the most codified world Ghirri We are obsessed with representations of the world, as if they were a duty.

This is why we never look at anything; we only look for confirmation of the representations we already have. I could imagine nothing of other times and other situations ]. In his stories Benati achieves this effect, as does Celati, by flattening the narrative tone to an oral-sounding, colloquial, regional pitch, and by focusing on the thoughts of the protagonist often the narrator who seeks to make sense of the strange surroundings in which he suddenly finds himself.

In so doing, Benati, like his colleagues, voices regret for a lost rural world and for its sense of com- munity, and for the present commercialization of narrative and the arts in general. A me sembra che si formino quasi dal niente, anche tante. Lunatici: As far as I can see, there are a lot of them, and they can be made of almost nothing at all. In fact they may even disappear completely. In other words, somebody may have seen them, may have travelled through them, and then, all of a sudden, he finds he knows nothing about them.

This would mean that all the various regions could be mapped one on top of the other, ad infinitum. Lunatici: [Yes, but an atlas made of water would be really good, because that way the frontiers of our regions would be able to move about, as happens in real life. They could drift. And then, if there were currents inside the atlas, the ink of the printing could flow and spread, like clouds when there is wind.

Moon: ] This vision of a drifting, unrepresentable territory is matched by the sense of emptiness experienced by Savini in his travels over this land, which leads him to speculate about the presence of invisible populations, that is, transparent and silent people, or people who leave no traces behind them Lunatici: ; Moon: Like Cavazzoni and other colleagues who accompanied him on his Po valley journeys, Celati seeks, in his work, to recover the traces of a dy- ing rural culture, and to retain a sense of community through the collabor- ation of artists who are moved by the shared desire to preserve a sense of place and of memory.

This posi- tion not only calls into question the current debate on space, place and landscape, but also overturns the traditional aesthetic approach to the exterior, moving away from a rational approach towards an empathetic and affective one that emphasizes the centrality of imagination. Una geografia letteraria tra Emilia e Romagna. On this see also Celati in Ghirri Borgonzoni and Taramelli Mappe della letteratura europea e mediterranea.

Luoghi della lettera- tura italiana. Milan: Mondadori Assunto, Rosario. Palermo: Novecento Benati, Daniele. Silenzio in Emilia. Milan: Feltrinelli —. In Benati. Un altro che non ero io: —. Un altro che non ero io. Reggio Emilia: Aliberti —. Un altro che non ero io: Bizzarri, Giulio ed. Esplorazioni sulla via Emilia. Scritture nel paesaggio. Vedute nel paesaggio. Milan: Feltrinelli Bonesio, Luisa. Geofilosofia del paesaggio. Milan: Mimesis Carchia, Gianni. Quaderni di estetica e critica —. Nome e immagine. Saggio su Walter Benjamin. Rome: Bulzoni Cavazzoni, Ermanno. Il poema del lunatici. Turin: Bollati Borin- ghieri.

The voice of the moon Turin: Einaudi Celati, Gianni. Narratori delle pianure. Milan: Feltrinelli. Voices from the plains Quattro novelle sulle apparenze. Appearances Verso la foce. Strada provinciale delle anime film —. Come pensare per immagini. Luigi Ghirri. Vista con camera. Milan: Motta: —. Narratori delle riserve. Seminario sul racconto: —. Racconti dal paesaggio: —. In Sironi. Geografie del narrare: Celati, Gianni, et al eds. Esplorazioni sulla via Emilia: di Monte, Michele ed. Paesaggio, Rivista di estetica 2 Dionisotti, Carlo.

Geografia e storia della letteratura italiana. Turin: Einaudi Dossena, Giampaolo. Luoghi letterari. Paesaggi, opere e personaggi. Milan: Sylvestre Bonnard Fellini, Federico. La voce della luna Foucault, Michel. New York: Pantheon: —. Modena: Punto e Virgola —. Il profilo delle nuvole. Milan: Feltrinelli, texts by Gianni Celati —. Paesaggio italiano, Quaderni di Lotus.

Viaggio in Italia. Il senso delle cose. Luigi Ghirri Giorgio Morandi. Reggio Emilia: Diabasis Gregory, Derek. Ontologia ed esperienza estetica della natura. The Condition of Postmodernity. Oxford: Blackwell Hillman, James. An Anatomy of a Personified Notion. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Milan: Adelphi, transl. Postmodern Cartographies. The Dictionary of Human Geography. Oxford: Blackwell Innocenti, Loretta ed. Scene, itinerari, dimore. The Production of Space. Cambridge, Mass. Reggio Emilia: Diabasis —.

Il senso delle cose: Messori, Giorgio, and Beppe Sebaste. Postmodern Geography. Theory and Praxis. Oxford: Blackwell Moretti, Franco. Scene, itinerari, dimore: Mussini, Massimo. Milan: Motta Orengo, Nico. Geografie del narrare: Perniola, Mario. Del sentire. Viaggio in Italia: —. Viaggio dentro un antico labirinto. Muri di carta. Fotografia e paesaggio dopo le avanguardie. Milan: Electa —. Racconti dal paesaggio: Rustichelli, Luigi ed. Seminario sul racconto. Porte senza porta. Incontri con maestri con- temporanei.

Le passeggiate del sognatore solitario. Milan: Feltrinelli, transl. Geografie del narrare. Insistenze sui luoghi di Gianni Celati e Luigi Ghirri. Reggio Emilia: Diabasis Soja, Edward. Postmodern geographies: the reassertion of space in critical theory. In Ashley Chantler and Carla Dente eds. Translation Practice. Amsterdam: Rodopi Taramelli, Ennery. Mondi infiniti di Luigi Ghirri. Modena: Diabasis Valtorta, Roberta ed. Racconti dal paesaggio. Milan: Lupetti —. Racconti dal paesaggio: Venturi Ferriolo, Massimo. Etiche del paesaggio. Il progetto del mondo umano. Rome: Editori Riuniti Teatini, Manuela.

Conversazione con Gianni Celati. La megalopoli padana. The procedures he employs are complex and manifold, nonetheless, through his practice of synthesizing poetic and prose genres, of questioning and problematizing the writing act and of en- gaging directly with the texts of his chosen predecessors, he succeeds not only in carving out an original literary space for himself within Italian writing, but by doing so, he also sets the boundaries and redefines the parameters of contemporary Sicilian literature.

All relate in some way to the central question of loss. Consolo occupies, however, what we might call an uncomfortable po- sition in the current panorama of Italian literature: though critically ac- claimed by academics and leading cultural figures,1 he is not well known among the general reading public in Italy, and current narrative trends in Italy today have in effect sidelined him from reaching a wider audience. His generation and their narratives, therefore, may be deemed to be out of step with con- temporary Italy and its populist trends, yet as such, offer an intriguing ex- ample of a deeply discordant, though consistent, literary poetics.

In this, Consolo adheres to and extends the Sicilian literary tradition: beyond the purely surface meaning of his texts, Consolo inscribes himself into a per- sonalized literary space. Within the wider context of Italian literature, Sicilian literature accords itself a dual role and hybrid identity. Trends in Contemporary Italian Narrative 75 indeed provincial, might preserve a sense of independence while being written in the language of another, dominant culture, although it is his par- ticular take on what constitutes this language which singles him out.

And he is not the only Sicilian writer interested in cultural imperialism, insular- ity, and the construction of a pluralistic bilingual native tradition: often what small or vulnerable cultural groups seek is not simply a decon- struction of the rhetoric of authority, but a construction or reconstruction of a usable past, an awareness of cultural tradition which will allow them to preserve or develop a sense of their own distinctive identity.

Of all the writers who make up the Sicilian tradition Consolo is the most palimp- sestuous, and also the most keenly aware of his responsibilities within that tradition. How can we deal with a government that reduces culture to profits and literature to best-sellers? Berlusconi with- drew at the last minute, and in his place Vittorio Sgarbi faced a torrent of abuse from Italian protestors and had to be escorted out of the building.

The then Italian Minister for Culture, Giuliano Urbani, accused the intel- lectuals of cowardice, with Consolo the main target of his attack. I have no intention of responding to the vulgarity expressed by the Minister. Until proven wrong, an intel- lectual who makes serious criticisms of his own government is one who demonstrates courage.

It is also used by Genette in his study Palimspsests. Literature in the Second Degree The multiplicity of discourses in some sense obfuscates traditional ethical messages in these texts, where even the very significance of the author is under critical and theoretical threat. However, it is exact- ly within this regional literature that a notion of contemporary commit- ment may emerge and be defined.

The role of the intellectual, especially the Sicilian one, is fraught with difficulties and seemingly paradoxical positions. The problem is primarily one of locating the intellectual, of finding a solid ground; is his or her figure now a redundant anachronism in the contemporary world? Consolo does not provide his reader with totalizing ethical truths. His narratives, on the contrary, question the very edifice of representation and its stability. Said saw the problem as one in which the realms of the public and private had expanded to such an extent that they were virtually without borders.

For there is a social and intellectual equivalence between this mass of overbearing interests and the discourse used to justify, disguise, or mys- tify its workings while also preventing objections or challenges to it. In an interview I conducted with him, Consolo stated: A writer must always be opposed to power […]. The writer does not need to take up arms; indeed he should not. The writer is the critical conscience of society, he must observe, go beyond the more evident signs in order to read other, more profound signs.

His peroration and defence is man, man in the fullest sense of the word. Because politics only deals with man in a social context, the writer must concern himself not solely with man in society, but also with man in all his complexity, in his totality, with the feelings of man, the grief of man. No politics concerns itself with the grief of man; only the poet, the writer can do this. Each of his fictional narratives places the very question of language at the centre of discourse.

The imposition of one language over another inevitably debases and erases the micro-histories of the marginalized and dispossessed, of those without the keys to the dominant linguistic system. His response to this language is noteworthy see Sinibaldi: 12 : I began, with my first book, by not writing in Italian. For me it was a sig- nal, the symbol of a rebellion against the norm, of a patricide […]. I want- ed to create a language that expressed a complete rebellion against history and its outcomes.

But it is not dialect. It is the introduction of material that has not been recorded before into the national linguistic code; it is a graft- ing of words which have been expelled or forgotten. Consolo, furthermore, foregrounds history and memory as the proper subjects for narrative experiment and investigation, yet history is seen as a function for translating the present. Trends in Contemporary Italian Narrative 79 The novel uncovers the overblown decadence into which much European culture had fallen.

The protagonist, Petro Marano, is a barely-disguised autobiographical figure. E corrompeva il linguaggio, stracangiava le parole, il senso loro—il pane si faceva pena, la pasta pene, il miele fiele, la pace pece, il senno sonno… Nottetempo: [Now it seemed as if a huge earthquake had created a fracture, opened up a rift between men and time, reality, it seemed as if some sort of mania or general spur were pushing everyone into bewilderment, confusion, in- sanity.

Avrebbe dato ragione, nome a tutto quel dolore. Nottetempo: [He thought about his notebook. He thought that once calm was restored, the words, the tone and the cadence were found, he would write, undo the knot inside him. He would give a reason, a name, to all that pain. The title was inspired by Book V of the Odyssey, where the weary and beaten Odysseus is washed up on the shore and shelters be- neath an olive and an oleaster branch, each born of the same trunk, each competing with the other.

They symbolize the contrast between the culti- vated and the wild, the human and the bestial, the salvation of culture and the loss of self. Here Consolo dispenses with literary fiction, and instead directs the narrative towards the poetic zone while availing himself of the fragile historical signs of a cancelled-out collective memory.

Trends in Contemporary Italian Narrative 81 At one point in the narrative, carefully constructed around the notion of the Descensus ad Inferos, the narrator nears modern-day Gela, once the hope of industrial advancement for the island and now the locus of appal- ling scenes of human debasement and degradation. Trova solo senso il dire o ridire il male, nel mondo invaso in ogni piega e piaga dal diluvio melmoso e indifferente di parole atone e consunte, con parole antiche o nuove, con diverso ac- cento, di diverso cuore, intelligenza.

If I had the harsh and crude rhymes… To speak of Gela in the most forceful and truthful way, to speak of this extreme example of inhumanity, this oleaster, this bitter fruit, this obscene foetus of power and progress, to speak of its evil over and over, and to speak of it beyond fiction and metaphor is an arduous or impossible task.

The only thing that makes sense is to speak or speak again of its evil—in a world whose every fold and laceration is full of the muddy and impassive flood of atonic, worn-out words—with words old and new, with a different accent, a different heart and intelligence. Lo Spasimo, however, is much more than another chronicle of the Sicilian mafia. This narrative constitutes a break within the Sicilian literary tra- dition and is one of the first examples in Sicilian literature in which a judicial figure is accorded positive values and heroic status.

On another level, however, Lo Spasimo thematizes and critically questions our notions of the novel today. This is mediated through a range of narrative strategies, and the introduction of different media which he will employ in turn—French silent cinema, music, pictorial art,—each highlighting the extraordinary range of intermediality in the novel. But Consolo refuses to engage with normative generic devices in Lo Spasimo, and problematizes the basis of literary writing itself and the role of litera- ture today. Lo Spasimo: [He loathed the novel, this corrupt, out-of-date, impracticable genre.

If he had written some, his were in a different, dissonant language, they were written in a verbal fury which had finished with a howl and dissolved into silence. Because of a growing loss of faith in the communicative possibilities of the novel, for Consolo the only way to counteract this is to poeticize the form, and submerge it with non-literary expression. Lo Spasimo: 47 [The feuilleton always concludes outside of the law or the courts, the pre- civil vendetta melts into sentiment, and the order of power and money is restored. The dark shadow lengthens, the devouring sect cowers, and the black silhouette of the avenger triumphs.

O da uccidere. Or killed. The novel then, is a critical and creative experiencing of the anti-mafia discourse, and a redefinition of the role of the judiciary in the fight against the mafia in Sicilian life and culture. This is akin to the plot-driven premise of any giallo, where the investigator must discover the identity of a criminal pharmakos, so that through his unmasking society is restored to its former state.

Consolo has not published any major work of fiction since , and this is indeed telling, while his journalistic discursive interventions have in- creased, especially since These pieces are deliberately written in a communicative style and range from articles of civil outrage to pointedly sarcastic short stories directed at Berlusconi and his government. This is the Italy that brought a man by the name of Silvio Berlusconi to power, a prime minister who, as if he were Padre Pio, promises the indecent miracle of a pardon for those who have built houses illegally.

Not all his newspaper pieces are in the form of outraged interventions; some are cast as bitterly ironic, some as openly sarcastic. An important land. It has lost all mem- ory of itself, its history, its identity. Italian has become a horrendous language, a babble invaded by media languages which express nothing but merchandise and consumption. It provides fertile ground and energy for a grubby group of cunning writers, who are media personalities before being writers, and with their writing—detective novels, comic-grotesque novels, sketches—they entertain and delight the new readers.

This home, however, is one in which retreat and solu- tions are denied. I saw one yesterday evening, after many years. As illusory as these here on the Iblean. Moreover, through his complex narratives, Consolo endeavours to create an individual and unique space within Italian narrative, a space in which the poetic, memorial and ethical are renewed and, despite their fragility, sustained through language. The Cambridge Companion to the Italian Novel. Milan: Bompiani Burns, Jennifer. Nottetempo, casa per casa, Milan: Mondadori —. Lo Spasimo di Palermo.

Di qua dal faro.

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Il viaggio di Odisseo. Rappresentare il Mediter- raneo. Lo sguardo italiano. Il Piacere. Toward a Minor Litera- ture. Oxford: Berg Ferroni, Giulio. Passioni del Novecento. Rome: Donzelli —. I confini della critica. Naples: Guida Francese, Joseph. Anatomy of Criticism. Four essays. Literature in the Second Degree. Moi aussi. Paris: Editions de Seuil Levi, Carlo. Totality and Infinity. An Essay on Exteriority. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: Duquesne Univerity Press, transl. Pirandello o la stanza della tortura.

Newton, Adam Zachary. Narrative Ethics. Cambridge Mass: Harvard UP. Onofri, Massimo. Saggi sulla letteratura siciliana del Novecento.

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La spola infinita: dalla vita alla scrittura, dalla scrittura alla vita. Palermo: Sellerio Pirandello, Luigi. Saggi, poesie, scritti varii. Novelle per un anno. Usi e costume, credenze e pregiudizi del popolo siciliano. Humanism and Democratic Criticism. La Sicilia come metafora. Intervista di Marcelle Padovani.

Opere Milan: Bompiani —. Milan: Bompiani Segre, Cesare. Intrecci di voci. La polifonia nella letteratura del Novecento. Tempo di bilanci. La fine del Novecento. Turin: Einaudi Sinibaldi, Marino. Itaca, addio. Vittorini, Pavese, Meneghello, Satta: il romanzo del ritorno. At a general level we can take it to indicate texts which repre- sent gay and lesbian characters, experiences and desires. Trends in Contemporary Italian Narrative 91 ption that there is—or should be—a direct correlation between the sex- uality of the author and the contents of the text, i.

Foucault has argued that the history of sexuality is effectively a history of discourses which create this sexuality even as they articulate it. Both Duncan and Ross address aspects of the dynamic relationship between biographical knowledge and textual production with respect to issues of sexuality. Usually such representations come from a heteronormative perspective. More rare are instances of writers who have consciously attempted to give substance to a homosexual identity in their work. In recent years, however, as well as a significant rise in the number of texts which deal overtly with gay and lesbian identities, there has also been a perceptible change in the ways in which these identities are presented.

In addition to providing a brief summary of the literary landscape, it will analyse a selected number of texts in the light of issues of sexuality and textuality. Gay novels and lesbian novels are largely considered separately although there is some productive overlap in terms of themes discussed , since as has been noted by many critics, it is often helpful to approach gay and lesbian experiences from a differential perspective, so as to avoid col- lapsing the two radically multiple communities into one another through an unhelpful lack of attention to the specificities relevant to each.

Methodologically, however, there is no necessary distinction made in terms of how the categories are approached. As such there is a common 6 See Hanscombe: Homosexuality in the Movies , and the film of the same name. The bibliographies appended to the Principesse azzurre series contain a large number of foreign translations indicating the existence of a readership previously unaddressed by a native Italian tradition. Reader, I read about him The aim of this section of the chapter is to look at how a small selection of contemporary gay male writers in Italy have both reiterated the equation of gay sexuality and gay textuality, and recognized the provisional, temp- orary, and perhaps highly subjective nature of their conclusions.

An interest in literary history, the relationship between reader and author, the nature of the creative process itself are recurrent topics at a time when, in other national literatures, themes such as AIDS, social exclusion, and the ramifications of homo- phobia have been more to the fore. This is not to say that gay Italian writing has been concerned solely with aesthetics. The nature of public representations of homosexuality are seen to be vital political inter- ventions in themselves and their absence is not inconsequential. Such anxieties notwithstanding, some gay men wanted to read books about other gay men.

Angelo Pezzana offers this as the primary motivation behind his decision to write his autobiography: When I was young I was engaged in a desperate and pointless search for homosexual stories and lives. I would like to have read the autobiography 8 See de Lauretis There is little academic work done in Italy in this field; note, however, the very recent initiative sponsored by the Di Gay Project in Rome, which has resulted in the publication of the first volume of Omosapiens ed.

Riz- zo , intended as an annual journal. Underlining a tendency already noted in the Italian publishing industry, he observes that gay Italian readers exhibit a clear preference for foreign texts, or those published in the very recent past, or they read Italian classics with genuine love, but with the slight sensation of not being represented, recognized, and loved deeply, in return.

And so in terms of their relationships with books too, they get used to accepting a condition of alienation and invisibility in their own country, their own culture. The dynamic he presents between reading and writing, author and public is instrumental to the process of self-definition. This anxiety over self-definition is a structuring element in the three texts that constitute the primary focus of this section.

I knew about the anxiety, the exhilaration, the curiosity, the torment, the desire, the sensation. But I had no idea that it had a name] Although all three books are very different in tone, the quest to find some mode of self-definition or identification constitutes their common ground. The journeys taken, and the solutions arrived at, vary, yet together they illuminate the work of reading and writing as a resource in the project of identity formation.

It is worth quoting what he says in full, as it raises a host of issues relating to the topic of this chapter in that it attempts to elucidate the complex relationship between writer, reader, and the contexts of literary production and reception. His aim was to: bring to light a homosexual culture that expressed itself with its own themes and images, albeit restricted by a series of prohibitions, in order to highlight the degree of discrimination experienced by homosexuals even in literature, either at the point of production, or at that of transmission or reception, or in the creative act itself, this too, subordinate to the dogmatic reproduction of the heterosexual model.

To write a gay literary history has then a transformative rather than descriptive purpose in that it wills into existence what it purports to document. Gnerre sees the documentary function of this putative tradition operating at the level of the literary form itself as much as at that of content. Again there is a sense of belatedness here; the idea that identity comes into being only after the fact.

Such observations compromise the view that gay writing is very often confessional in nature in that its impact depends on the direct transcription of life into text. As such it perhaps represents a narrative of individual wish-fulfilment more than social critique. Yet, a number of gay writers have been conscious of the fact that testimony has its own rhetoric that, however powerful, dislocates the text from the self that produces it. This distance from a purely expres- sive notion of literature was underlined by Tondelli in a talk given to aspiring young writers.

As such it must follow and behave according to a whole series of rules that have nothing to do with reality, but everything to do with literature, which is the realm, the context in which characters live. He feels no more at home in the gay bars he occasionally visits than he does in his small home town whose rhythms are regulated by the con- tinuity of successive generations.

The physical investment of his sexuality in both the process of writing and its eventual product is an inti- mation of the almost anti-intellectual nature of the endeavour. The writer only lives through this game of self-concealment and self-revelation. There is no militancy here, but rather a sense of the masochism of self-exposure, a painful game that needs to be acted out.

The self is generated in this performance of productive occlusion. While Tondelli conceptualizes both writing and homosexuality as antagonistic to sociality, other writers embrace the possibilities their con- joining offers for communality. Perhaps we were different because we were artists] Art though is not just a question of sexual sensibility. They are embodied, historically-loca- ted phenomena, and potentially instrumental in the articulation of a communitarian project.

It is also something that emerges from the texts by Bianchi and Fortunato for whom the experiences of read- ing and writing are not solitary activities. The songs themselves provide the narrator with a means for interpreting the contours of his own life, and affording it a level of cultural intelligibility that suggests a common cul- tural inheritance. As an adolescent he was provided with an improving diet of classic gay texts by his younger, and clearly more urbane sister, Caterina. The renown of authors such as Forster, Mishima, and Isherwood offered a degree of cultural validation that had little to do with the content of their work.

In fact, it was the first time I had heard the term homo- sexual used without the imputation of queer] Generations: This homage is about both the veneration and the personal appropriation of the legacy of a literary avatar. Having felt alienated from his family on account of his sexuality, he is returned to the family by his transgressive emotional attachment. Yet the temporality of this potency is uncertain. Cosa poteva essere? What could it be? Not just as a reader: it was a world that defined him as an individual] 9. Death is always a family affair, and participation in its rituals, as Leo realized after the loss of Thomas, a per- formative marking of heterosexual entitlement.

The politics of mourn- ing are explored further as he comments on reactions to the death of his friend, Tondelli. Yet unlike Tondelli, Fortunato moves beyond this ap- parent impasse in the final chapter of his text that sees him at his graduation on the threshold of adulthood. La giovinezza non vole- vo chiuderla con un addio.

Desideravo invece connettere ogni cosa, fare un grande inventario, ricordare. Ecco questo era il mio sentimento. Instead I wanted to bring everything together, compile a huge inventory, remember. This was what I felt. Unite, bring things together. Perhaps connecting, bringing to- gether also meant this: planting roots in your own language] The idea of homecoming that concludes the texts by Bian- chi and Fortunato does not instate the illusion of a happy ending. Perhaps what most clearly distinguishes the tone of the later novels from Camere separate is their sense of irony.

Tutta la mia generazione la capiva. My entire generation knew what she meant. Its more serious purpose is to highlight the indirection required by the gay autobio- graphical project in the absence of both literary and existential models on which to plot its contours. What lesbians do in novels An initial exploration of the figuration of lesbian identities in the contemporary Italian cultural landscape reveals a recurring set of themes as several words appear repeatedly: silence; isolation; invisibility; sepa- ration.

Trends in Contemporary Italian Narrative Lesbian Network Collegamento fra le Lesbiche Italiane CLI attests that lesbians often feel cancelled out and invisible even to each other, and struggle to find a sense of self or of belonging. Hainsworth and Robey: There is no canon of Italian lesbian authors, nor is there an Italian lesbian literary criticism. Rinalda Russo: Little is known in general about the history of lesbianism in Italy or of its literary representation.

Giartosio: However, in recent years Italian authors and publishing houses have been instrumental in remedying this situation. See also Danna for an analysis of lesbian-themed lateth-century novels. Indeed, the work of writers and critics such as Vaccarello and Giacobino has sought to identify, and make available to an Italian reading public, literature which engages with lesbian subjectivities.

As editor of the collections Principesse azzurre mentioned above, Vacca- rello has provided resources and opportunities that seek to counter the isolation that many lesbians complain of in contemporary Italian society, and to address the lack of positive cultural images of lesbian desire and experience Olivieri and Santini: See Diotima. Trends in Contemporary Italian Narrative ermafrodite, cortigiane. Excavating the silenced histories of the past Several novels present events from the past, bringing to light the love that previously could only rarely speak its name, taking advantage of the relative willingness of even high profile publishers in recent years to support novels depicting lesbian subjectivity.

We might consider these novels as collectively constructing and constituting a series of lesbian genealogies—or gynealogies as Parati has called them—motivated by both overlapping and discrete objectives that range from a desire to voice oppression to a desire to reinstate a silenced history. The protagonist Dina flees Northern Italy for Sicily where she falls in love with Delia, but they are forcibly separated when their plans to elope are discovered.

This novel, which the author had written earlier but only chose to publish just before her death, can be read as a testimonial work that seeks to voice the difficulties endured by marginal- ized and pathologized individuals—although Tommasi omits the period she was forced to spend in a mental institution in Agrigento Giacobino It is autobiography as social critique, which on some level seeks to right the wrongs of the past by bringing them to the attention of current reading publics, and also to supplement the testimonial histories of wartime experience published in the aftermath of World War II which nar- rated some but by no means all of the violence visited on Italian citizens.

However, rather than offering individual testimony, this novel critiques the intellectual climate and restrictive social norms of the era. Trends in Contemporary Italian Narrative as well as with contemporary analysis of perceived sexual perversion, and interrogates issues of class and gender. Notably some more recent texts show a departure from this reluctance to stage a lesbian relationship within an Italian here-and-now. Of course this analysis barely touches on the range of texts that might be placed however tentatively within the category of lesbian literature.

Besides the points made here, there are several other recurring themes, forms and images that would merit further analysis. There is a political value to representing groups and individuals who have long been denied cultural status and recognition—a value that im- bues any text with a degree of significance that surpasses artistry. Jan Sellars vi writes: Lesbians in books: we are exploring the shape of ourselves past, present, future a curve, a promise, a brick wall; New thoughts, old beginnings.

Here she has written a love story, not well—but precious to me, because she wrote it for us. Italian novels and novelists that represent lesbian identities have perhaps yet to assume the ironic distance that characterizes some of the texts considered earlier that portray and critique gay male identities. Conclusions An important theme that emerges from this analysis is the significance attached to literary engagements with, and depictions of, gay and lesbian identities.

Furthermore, as the number of novels that deal with homosexuality, and indeed sexualities, in an Italian context grows, within a cultural context where issues of homosexual identity are gradually becoming less and less taboo, it is to be hoped that an eye for self-criticism and an interest in deconstructing stereotypes, including literary ones, remain central concerns.

Works Cited Aleramo, Sibilla. Alessandra Cenni. Rome: Savelli Bergman, David.

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