The Uses of Literature: Essays

Front Cover
Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1986 - Literary Criticism - 341 pages
10 Reviews
In these widely praised essays Calvino discusses literature as process, the great narrative game in the course of which writer and reader are challenged to understand the world. He discusses literature in relation to science, philosophy, and politics and analyzes aspects of the works of the great classical writers of the past. The collection concludes with tributes to contemporary writers. The literary intersests and critical insights expressed here are an important contribution to an understanding of the uses of litertature and to a comprehension of the work of a modern master.

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Review: The Uses of Literature

User Review  - Jeremy - Goodreads

As usual, Calvino does not disappoint. The writing is intelligent, and always dynamic, and he has this playful sensability which really comes through in his non fiction work. "Why read the classics ... Read full review

Review: The Uses of Literature

User Review  - Isla McKetta - Goodreads

Although I feel like I've read some of these essays before, Calvino is always a welcome kick in the ass to remind me what I love about reading and writing. Some of my favorites were "Cybernetics and ... Read full review

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About the author (1986)

Italo Calvino 1923-1984 Novelist and short story writer Italo Calvino was born in Cuba on October 15, 1923, and grew up in Italy, graduating from the University of Turin in 1947. He is remembered for his distinctive style of fables. Much of his first work was political, including Il Sentiero dei Nidi di Ragno (The Path of the Nest Spiders, 1947), considered one of the main novels of neorealism. In the 1950s, Calvino began to explore fantasy and myth as extensions of realism. Il Visconte Dimezzato (The Cloven Knight, 1952), concerns a knight split in two in combat who continues to live on as two separates, one good and one bad, deprived of the link which made them a moral whole. In Il Barone Rampante (Baron in the Trees, 1957), a boy takes to the trees to avoid eating snail soup and lives an entire, fulfilled life without ever coming back down. Calvino was awarded an honorary degree from Mount Holyoke College in 1984 and died in 1985, following a cerebral hemorrhage. At the time of his death, he was the most translated contemporary Italian writer and a contender for the Nobel Prize for Literature.

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