Beyond the Family Romance: The Legend of Pascoli
University of Toronto Press, 2007 - 203页
Giovanni Pascoli (1855-1912) is one of Italy's most canonical and beloved poets. In Beyond the Family Romance, Maria Truglio offers fresh insight into the uncanny qualities of Pascoli's domestic verse. As suggested by the Freudian title, this study opens a dialogue between Pascoli's literature and Freud's theories, with a particular focus on each author's interrogation of origins. Through close readings and historical contextualization, themes of regression, memory, and other manifestations of 'origins' are analyzed, moving Pascoli's poetry beyond the biographical strictures that have hitherto confined it.
Truglio's post-structuralist readings question the dichotomy between 'safety within the home' and the 'threatening outside world,' revealing the ambivalences with which images of the home are fraught in Pascoli's poetry. In addition to the sustained comparison with Freud's writing, Beyond the Family Romance explores parallels between Pascoli's work and such writers as Tarchetti, Boito, Poe, and Invernizio. Rethinking the concept of the fanciullino ('little child'), Truglio shows that Pascoli's poetry enacts a symbiosis between the logic of the rational modern adult and the mythic vision of the child.
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This ability to construct fantastic figures from simple natural phenomena recalls
the young Ulysses from ' L ' ultimo viaggio . ... threatening , monstrous forces
personified by Gog and Magog and the visionary , childlike nature of poetry .
Instead , it is the women in the courtroom as spectators who seem to be defying
the nature of their sex by their desire to watch and enjoy the trial . Such criticism
of the perverse desire to revel in another ' s misfortune is still heard today ...
In this deeply pessimistic poem , an apostrophe to a broom flower growing in the
volcanic ash on the slopes of Mt Vesuvius , Leopardi depicts nature as a
heartless ' matrigna ' or stepmother . Pascoli refutes this notion , insisting that
nature , on ...