Tag Archives: Italian literature

Translators on Books that Should Be Translated: Simona Baldelli’s “Evelina e le fate” (Evelina and the Fairies)

Baldelli’s inventiveness and skillful stylistic prowess are already noticeable in Evelina e le fate, with its vivid language adhering to a world of objects in which the characters come alive through a meddling of voices, each with its own substantive body

Voices Without Borders: Laura Imai Messina’s “The Phone Box at the Edge of the World,” Translated from Italian by Lucy Rand

By Claudia Dellacasa Ema are decorated votive wooden plaques left hanging up in Japanese shrines. At a distance, they all look the same. But if one is able to read what is written on them, one can take a glimpse of a fascinating number of stories, destinies, wishes, and hopes which emerge from an ostensible […]

Framing by Fragmentation: Elena Ferrante’s “Incidental Inventions,” Translated from Italian by Ann Goldstein

By Stiliana Milkova The timing of Elena Ferrante’s Incidental Inventions is impeccable – it offers us an aperitivo before we can delve into her new novel scheduled to come out in English translation in June 2020. While we wait, we can flip leisurely through the pages of Incidental Inventions, translated from Italian by Ann Goldstein, and already in bookstores. […]

Thresholds and Mothers: Elsa Morante’s “Arturo’s Island,” Translated from Italian by Ann Goldstein

By Saskia Elizabeth Ziolkowski Elsa Morante’s Arturo’s Island: A Novel is an enchanting, complex work about a boy, Arturo, growing up on the island Procida. He swims, struggles to understand his father, adores his dog, falls in love, and eventually leaves home. His drama of adolescent feelings is both universally relatable and singular. Since he […]

The Mother of All Questions: Donatella di Pietrantonio’s “A Girl Returned,” translated from Italian by Ann Goldstein

By Barbara Halla “Motherhood,” writes Jacqueline Rose in her book Mothers: An Essay on Love and Cruelty, “is … the place in our culture where we lodge, or rather bury, the reality of our conflicts, of what it means to be fully human” (1). More than one century of Italian literature has grappled precisely with […]

Translators on Books that Should be Translated: “Indigo” by Roberto Carretta and Renato Viola

by Stiliana Milkova The reclusive clockmaker Anton Ivanovic has disappeared from his apartment in Turin. His only friend, the erudite professor of mythology Joshua Momigliano, receives a letter which sends him on a quest to find out what happened to Anton. As Joshua asks in the opening pages, “Anton Ivanovic was a reserved, impenetrable man […]

Tasting Life in the State of Exception: Rosella Postorino’s “At the Wolf’s Table,” translated from Italian by Leah Janeczko

by Maurizio Vito Bertolt Brecht’s epigraph from The Threepenny Opera at the beginning of Rosella Postorino’s novel At the Wolf’s Table ushers in the undertone characterizing the story the reader is about to peruse: “A man can only live by absolutely forgetting he’s a man like other folk.” Forgetting is one way to survive troubled […]