A Literary Tour of Italy is simply a selection of my best essays on the literature, art and politics of my adopted country. From Dante, Boccaccio and Machiavelli through to Eco and Saviano, from the Stil Novo to the Divisionismo, from Mazzini and Garibaldi to Mussolini and Sironi across centuries of history and intellectual movements, I will hope these essays will give English readers some idea of the lay of the literary land of Italy.
Meantime the extract below should offer a lively intro to the scope of the book and its rather personal nature, because in the end, just like Italian Neighbours or Italian Ways, this is my vision of Italy, my particular view. It always seems important to have that said.
Beneath the extract button you can check out the book’s index.
Dante: Hell and Back
Giovanni Boccaccio: Famous Women
Niccolò Machiavelli: True Scandal
Giacomo Leopardi: Surviving Giacomo
Giuseppe Mazzini: Bloody Glamour
Giuseppe Garibaldi: Invention of a Hero
Carlo Collodi: Knock on Wood
Ippolito Nievo: Confessions of an Italian
Giovanni Verga: A Chorus of Cruelty
Divisionism: Throwing Light on Italian Identity
Benito Mussolini: The Divided Duce
Mario Sironi: Fascist Work
Carlo Emilio Gadda: Che pasticcio!
Eugenio Montale: A Prisoner’s Dream
Curzio Malaparte: The Horrors of War
Ignazio Silone: After the Earthquake
Dino Buzzati: The Enchanted Fort
Vitaliano Brancati: The Beautiful Antonio
Alberto Moravia: The Conformist and Contempt Revisited
Cesare Pavese: The Outsider’s Art
Elsa Morante: The Dark in the Piazza
Giorgio Bassani: The Garden of the Finzi-Continis
Antonio Tabucchi: The Italian Pessoa