A City in Search of an Author : The Literary Identity of by Katia Pizzi

By Katia Pizzi

Poised among the Mediterranean and the Mitteleuropa, crossroads of civilizations and seat of shiny cultural and literary existence, Trieste is now said as having fun with unrivalled cultural prestige among Italian towns. This quantity, the 1st finished research of Triestine literature in English, initially reassesses Trieste+?s literary id, paying specific recognition to the interval among 1918 and 1954 whilst neighborhood writing grew to become intensely conscious of its neighborhood specificity and a few of its primary motifs got here prominently to the fore. Trieste+?s singular border identification, reflected in a variegated literary output, emerges right here as encumbered with complexities and ambiguities, reminiscent of the arguable inspiration of triestinita, the ambiguous relation with nationalism, in particular in its Fascist inflection, and the anxieties generated by way of repeated re-definitions of the area+?s historic borders.

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Laments over a 'mutilated victory' combined with the mythicization of the Great War added to its emotional, irrational potential. 6 Its heritage was a latent national diffidence, still extant today. A related aspect is the ideology that developed around the concept of woman and in particular of the mother. The Catholic model of mother/ Madonna was combined with discourses of fertility, patriotism and sacrifice at various times. 7 This is apparent both in the depiction of female characters who tend to assume traits of this kind and in the artistic and 6.

P. Creagh: Danube [London: Harvill, 1989]). 37. F. Muiesan, Giorni e avventure di un'infanzia a Trieste (Trieste: Italo Svevo, 1992). 38. Stuparich and Quarantotti Gambini are two of the most prominent writers from 1. LITERARY TRIESTE 51 significantly refers to Trieste as a domesticated Eden with the emphasis on 'domestic'. Finally Trieste as 'citta' coinciding with 'mondo' is vaguely identifying Trieste with a container of numerous, at times contradictory experiences: in this respect Trieste is interchangeable with any other city.

The Invention of Tradition (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983). 1. LITERARY TRIESTE 39 Both this Mitteleuropa flair and the Trieste legend widespread in Italy contributed to defining a Triestine literary tradition. Beginning in the interwar period, a growing literary market was progressively made aware of the eccentric position of the city as well as of the pulling power of a handful of highly original local writers of whom at least one, Italo Svevo, would soon enjoy a European reputation.

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