Format Type: PDF, ePub
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The short story writers featured in this brief anthology – all established figures on the Italian literary scene – have been specifically chosen as being representative of the various geographical regions in the Italian peninsula, ranging from Ginzburg, Pavese and Soldati (Piedmont), Colombi Guidotti and Guareschi (Emilia Romagna region), Tozzi (Tuscany), D’Annunzio (Abruzzi region) and Moravia (Lazio region) to Pirandello and Verga (Sicily) and Deledda (Sardinia). Twelve of these literary masters’ very best novelle – richly diverse both thematically and stylistically – can be read in the original, unabridged Italian with parallel English translations, accompanied by a brief account of the life and literary achievements of each writer, as well as a few notes on the context in which the narrative was written and some relevant features of theme and content. The novelle themselves, originally published in Italy between 1880 (marking the publication of Verga’s La lupa) and 1971 (the year of the publication of Soldati’s Una donna comprensiva), span almost a whole century. Although presented in chronological order of publication – being self-contained racconti – they can be read in any order. All of them lend themselves to the leitmotif of the collection: that of a woman as the central character (D’Annunzio’s Candia, the Princess in Deledda’s fairy-tale, Pirandello’s Mommina, gnà Pina in Verga’s story, etc.). Two of the writers, Grazia Deledda and Natalia Ginzburg, are themselves women writing about women. The anthology, on the one hand, offers readers the opportunity to savour a few delights of Italian literature and culture, and, on the other, promotes effective language learning through a wide spectrum of language and styles. While remaining faithful to the originals, the translations lay emphasis on readability and fluency, thus making their perusal a pleasurable experience in itself. In addition, the stories in this collection will certainly stimulate further interest in Italian literature.