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Literary Partners in 19th-C. Italy: Love, Success, Envy

Literary Partners in 19th-C. Italy: Love, Success, Envy
100 St. Joseph Street, Carr Hall room 404
Time: Oct 2nd, 4:00 pm End: Oct 2nd, 6:00 pm
Interest Categories: Women & Gender Studies (FAS), Italian Studies (FAS), Critical Theory, Comparative Literature (FAS), Book History/Print Culture, 1900-1950, 1800-1900
Lecture by Ombretta Frau, Mount Holyoke College

Prof. Salvatore Bancheri, Emilio Goggio Chair in Italian Studies, cordially invites you to a public lecture by

Prof. Ombretta Frau, Mount Holyoke College
Literary Partners in Nineteenth Century Italy: Love, Success, Envy

Abstract: This paper focuses on the relationship between Annie Vivanti and Giosuè Carducci in the context of nineteenth and early twentieth century issues of mentorship for aspiring women writers.  Since their first, dubious, encounter in 1891 in Bologna, Carducci and Vivanti’s relationship has been at the center of Italian literary gossip.  It also inspired Jolanda’s last novel La perla (1916).   In 1921, long after her Carducci’s death, Vivanti published an original personal essay in which she describes her relationship with her friend/mentor/lover.  I argue that Vivanti’s unusual essay is her way to rebel towards her ‘master’ Carducci to start her own, less successful but long lasting and dignified, literary career.
Ombretta Frau is Associate Professor of Italian at Mount Holyoke College and Chair of the Department of Classics and Italian.  She specializes in nineteenth and early twentieth century literature and culture.  Frau holds a laurea in English literature from the University of Cagliari, she holds a master’s degree in Italian from Boston College and a Ph.D., also in Italian, from Harvard (2002).  Before Mount Holyoke, she taught at Rice University in Texas. Her research focuses on Luigi Pirandello’s prose, history of nineteenth century Italian culture and women’s studies.  She is the author of several articles on Pirandello and, with Cristina Gragnani, the co-editor of the critical edition of Pirandello’s Taccuino di Harvard, 2002.  Frau and Gragnani discovered the Pirandello manuscript at Harvard’s Houghton Library while they were graduate students.  In the field of Italian Women Studies, she has published articles on Mantea, Jolanda, Sfinge, Antelling, all forgotten but once-upon-a-time influential authors.  She is also the author of the critical edition of Mantea’s EspatriataDa Torino a Honolulu, the fascinating chronicle of Mantea’s adventurous trip from Italy to Hawaii in 1887.  In 2011 she published a book, co-written with Cristina Gragnani, on the intellectual circle of several nineteenth century Italian authors:  Sottoboschi letterari (Literary Underground, Florence, 2011). Presently, she is at work on a project on the material culture of nineteenth century writing. Frau is the former president of the Women Studies Caucus of the American Association for Italian Studies.  Finally, Ombretta Frau is a blogger for the Italian edition of Huffington Post where she blogs on women’s rights, Italian culture and literature.

This event is free and open to all, but registration is requested.  Please RSVP to italian.studies@utoronto.ca.  For further information, please contact the Department of Italian Studies at (416) 926-2345.

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