Rewriting the Journey in Contemporary Italian Literature: Figures of Subjectivity in Progress

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University of Toronto Press, 2008 - Literary Criticism - 381 pages
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The mobility of women is a central issue in feminist analysis of literary works and historical periods. Rewriting the Journey in Contemporary Italian Literature explores the concept of the journey from feminist, psychoanalytic, and postcolonial perspectives, in order to offer an alternative understanding of "moving." Cinzia Sartini Blum examines the new literature of migration in Italian and journeys in the works of Biancamaria Frabotta, Dacia Maraini, Toni Maraini, and Maria Pace Ottieri, to demonstrate that women writers and migrant authors in contemporary Italy present journeys as events that are beyond heroic modern exploration and postmodern fragmentation.

Using the mythical figure of Gradiva, Blum shows how contemporary Italian women writers have reinvented Gradiva to reveal subjectivities that challenge and overcome the postmodern melancholia and nihilism prevalent in contemporary male writers and thinkers. She also considers the connection between metaphorical and literal mobility, the role of the intellectual as cultural intermediary, the roles of women in cultural encounters within mass migrations, and how migrancy is a way of being in the postcolonial world.

An impeccable piece of original scholarship, Rewriting the Journey in Contemporary Italian Literature will be of interest to feminist, literary, and postcolonial scholars.

 

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Contents

Beyond the End of the Journey
11
Gradivas Journey Genealogy of a Feminist Trope
43
Biancamaria Frabottas Lead From fuga to viandanza
91
Walking in the Shoes of Another Dacia Marainis Departures and Returns
132
Exile as the Ultimate Utopia Toni Marainis vivere vagabondo
169
Bridging Cultures Figures of Mediation
202
Bringing Home the Exotic
204
The Journey in Migrant Literature
221
Toward an Interactive Universalism
255
Notes
259
Works Cited
347
Index of Names
373
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About the author (2008)

Cinzia Sartini Blum is an associate professor in the Department of French and Italian at the University of Iowa.

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