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Gender and sexuality

Contemporary Italian Women Writers and Traces of the Fantastic: The Creation of Literary Space
Danielle E. Hipkins

  • ‘In her captivating first book, Danielle E. Hipkins assumes the challenging task of applying feminist literary theory to a complex form and attendant writing practice.’ — Lynn Makau, Contemporary Women's Writing 2:2, December 2008, 181-82
  • ‘Rimane aperta la discussione, extratestuale, sullo spazio occupato dalle scrittrici contempo- ranee nel canone letterario. Non sono sicura che, come suggerisce Hipkins, la marginalità della Ombres sia legata al fatto che la scrittrice ‘points to a literature beyond a claustrophobic space of epigonality’ (p. 168), e non, semplicemente, a un mercato letterario dai ritmi di produzione e consumo di durata sempre più breve. Ma questa considerazione nulla toglie all’interesse dello studio proposto: abbiamo bisogno di letture puntuali e teoricamente ponder- ate dei percorsi letterari della post-modernità per arrivare a una migliore comprensione delle dinamiche culturali, di genere ma non solo, che attraversano la società in cui viviamo.’ — Gigliola Sulis, Italian Studies 64.1, Spring 2009
  • ‘Plenty of new wine and new research... a new interdisciplinarity in Italian gender and sexuality studies.’ — Carol Lazzaro-Weis, Journal of Romance Studies 10.2, Summer 2010, review article, 97-106

The Power of Disturbance: Elsa Morante’s Aracoeli
Edited by Sara Fortuna and Manuele Gragnolati

  • ‘The chapters avail themselves of the entire arc of twentieth-century theories and models of subjectivity and sexuality, to try to unravel Manuele’s search for freedom from his all-consuming passion for his mother Aracoeli, and include Freud, Jung, Klein, Bowlby, Stern, Sander, Winnicott, Laplanche and Pontalis, Kristeva, Lacan, Cavarero, Muraro, Silverman, (Jessica) Benjamin, and Butler. These theories serve the novel very well, illuminating the many strands and aspects of Manuele’s ‘condition’ and of the novel... An invaluable teaching tool and thus an incentive to include Aracoeli in advanced university courses in Italian and European literature.’ — Adalgisa Giorgio, Italian Studies 66.1, March 2011, 144-46

Women in Italian Renaissance Culture and Society
Edited by Letizia Panizza

  • ‘In her introduction Letizia Panizza writes that one of the aims of the collection is to recover neglected areas of Italian culture and society, which she has done... Many of the essays are quite good; all are informative.’ — Elissa B. Weaver, Renaissance Quarterly 2002, 713-15
  • ‘Offers a vast and well-organized view of the position that early modern women occupied in Italy from 1400 to 1650... I highly recommend the collection.’ — Rinaldini Russell, Forum Italicum 36.1, 2002, 214-15
  • ‘The above is merely a fraction of the content. There is certainly richness in this volume. Many branches of scholarship gain by having these articles in print and they are an eloquent testimony to the vitality of scholarship in this area.’ — Olwen Hufton, Modern Language Review 97.1, 2002
  • ‘This excellent book of essays... retains the liveliness and originality of the conference held at Royal Holloway, University of London, ... with the added bonus that all those given in Italian have been translated, so that — as the editor says — we can benefit from the work of many specialists, some of whose work has not previously been available in English.’ — Alison Brown, Italian Studies LVII, 2002, 171-2
  • ‘Without doubt, the most important volume yet published in English on the specific contribution of women to culture and society in Italy in the Renaissance... The coherence of the volume is assured by a number of overarching themes.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies XXXIX, 2003, 480


The Holocaust

Holocaust Intersections: Genocide and Visual Culture at the New Millennium
Edited by Axel Bangert, Robert S. C. Gordon and Libby Saxton
Moving Image 4

  • ‘The ‘millennium’ of this book’s title stands for the reconstitution of Europe since the end of the Cold War — one effect of which has been an enhanced knowledge of the Holocaust based on archives in the former Eastern Bloc — and for the rise of digital media during the same period.’ — Henry K. Miller, Sight and Sound April 2014, 106


History of ideas

Image and Word: Reflections of Art and Literature
Edited by Antonella Braida and Giuliana Pieri

Science and Literature in Italian Culture: From Dante to Calvino
Edited by Pierpaolo Antonello and Simon A. Gilson

  • ‘Legenda’s elegantly produced volume is all things to all people. It does discuss literature and science, but its miscellany is all the more enjoyable for not being tightly constrained by a potentially dogmatic, even questionable, unifying theme of "L&S".’ — J. R. Woodhouse, Modern Language Review 100.3, 7 July 2005, 845-48
  • Speculum October 2005, 1404


Languages in contact

Dante’s Plurilingualism: Authority, Knowledge, Subjectivity
Edited by Sara Fortuna, Manuele Gragnolati and Jürgen Trabant

  • ‘From the introduction to the concluding interview with Giorgio Pressburger, this volume of essays is characterized by both authoritative contributions from major figures in Dante studies (Baranski, Gragnolati, Pertile) and also by genuinely original lines of enquiry. Dante’s Plurilingualism constitutes an indispensable point of reference for contemporary Dante studies, an ideal companion to the new Dante editions that have recently appeared, and also acts as a constant spur to reread all of the poet’s works, and to appreciate the ‘plurilingualism’ that is inherent even in those works that that precede the Comedy.’ — Federica Pich, Lettere Italiane 2011, 323-28
  • ‘Although we also find essays that offer a strong historicizing or linguistic focus and others that are powerful contributions to the methodologies and findings traditionally associated with Dante studies, the volume remains of particular note (and importance) for its concern to open Dante up to dialogue across disciplines and to relate him to contemporary debates.’ — Simon Gilson, Modern Language Review 107.1, January 2012, 292-93
  • ‘Colpisce e affascina, in Dante’s Plurilingualism, una ben percepibile disposizione all’audacia interpretativa, al “saggio” come esperimento intellettuale; ciò che convince, nell’insieme, è che non si sia di fronte alla mera esibizione di uno “stile” critico – pur di- versamente delineato –, ma ad un molteplice tentativo di indagine su Dante, inteso come oggetto e al tempo stesso soggetto non tanto di una determinata stagione della lingua e della letteratura italiane, quanto di una più ampia e complessa storia culturale.’ — Martino Marazzi, L'Alighieri 39, June 2012, 160-64
  • ‘Proprio nella lingua che usiamo, con cui scriviamo, possiamo essere convinti che Dante sia arrivato prima di noi e che ci abbia lasciato una grandissima eredità. Gli interventi di questo volume riescono a mettere in evidenza tutti gli aspetti per cui la lingua di Dante e il suo modo di utilizzarla appaiono ancora oggi come un ‘miracolo inconcepibile’.’ — Irene Baccarini, Dante VIII, 2011, 227-30

Multilingualism in Italy Past and Present
Edited by Anna Laura Lepschy and Arturo Tosi
Studies In Linguistics 1

  • ‘A wide-ranging but coherent discussion of some central questions regarding the formation and present state of the Italian language itself, its varieties and its relationship with dialects. This important book contains twelve essays, ranging chronologically from Renaissance elites to the European Union.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies XL.1, 2004, 113
  • ‘Clear and instructive, suitable both for scholars looking for some of the latest research in Italian linguistics, and for a more general readership interested in exploring some of the central questions in the history and development of the Italian language, a topic of enduring interest and endless fascination. Particularly rewarding are the sections devoted to Italian dialects, often left by the wayside in general discussions of the Italian language.’ — Luigi Bonaffini, Forum Italicum 37/2, Fall 2003, 582-4
  • ‘Offers a stimulating reading on central questions in Italian linguistics ... For the range of topics examined and the accessibility of the contributions, this volume will be a useful tool for students, teachers, and researchers, and in general for everyone interested in the Italian language, while exemplifying the liveliness and high level of research in the field of Italian linguistics in the UK.’ — Helena Sanson, Modern Language Review 100.1, 2005, 228-9
  • ‘There can be no doubt that the majority of these papers will indeed be understood by the non-expert. Their authors manage to explain notions, situations, and developments, some of them obviously complex, with a simplicity and clarity which will be satisfying and illuminating to those with a non-specialist interest. But they do not fail either to bring in new ideas and research which offer food for thought to specialists in Italian linguistics and linguistics history.’ — Howard Moss, Italian Studies Volume LIX, 2004, 192-4

Rethinking Languages in Contact: The Case of Italian
Edited by Anna Laura Lepschy and Arturo Tosi
Studies In Linguistics 2


Law and society

Culture, Censorship and the State in Twentieth-Century Italy
Edited by Guido Bonsaver and Robert Gordon

England and the Avignon Popes: The Practice of Diplomacy in Late Medieval Europe
Karsten Plöger

  • Ralf Lützelschwab, Quellen und Forschungen aus Italienischen Archiven und Bibliotheken 86, 2006, 814-16
  • Medioevo latino XXVIII, July 2007, 1153
  • ‘From the perspective of communication developments, the present book produces important insights into the many challenges with which medieval diplomacy had to cope.’ — Sophia Menache, The Medieval Review February 2007
  • ‘A thorough and enlightening study of how diplomacy was conducted between the two courts at a time when war, plague, and the activities of unemployed mercenaries made travel between Westminster and Avignon dangerous and exacting, while the reception enjoyed by envoys was likely to be frosty at best.’ — Norman Housley, Speculum April 2006
  • Stefan White, Francia-Recensio 2008.3 http://www.perspectivia.net/content/publikationen/francia/francia-recensio/2008-3/MA/Ploeger_Weiss

Speaking Out and Silencing: Culture, Society and Politics in Italy in the 1970s
Edited by Anna Cento Bull and Adalgisa Giorgio
Italian Perspectives 12

  • ‘An excellent analysis of the 1970s... important new insights into the anni di piombo.’ — Liz Wren-Owens, Modern Language Review 104.1, January 2009, 213-14
  • ‘Each of these essays confirms that terrorism is an ineluctable topic in any discussion of the long 1970s... Indeed, the two longest entries in the index to the volume are for ‘terrorism’ and for ‘Moro, Aldo’. Aldo Moro is all over the book, just as he is uncannily omnipresent in Italian culture...’ — Alan O'Leary, Modern Italy 13.3, August 2008, 361-63

Remembering Aldo Moro: The Cultural Legacy of the 1978 Kidnapping and Murder
Edited by Ruth Glynn and Giancarlo Lombardi
Italian Perspectives 23


National and cultural identity

Italy in Crisis: 1494
Edited by Jane Everson and Diego Zancani

  • ‘The eight chapters are prefaced by a stimulating introduction, and rounded off by a helpful index: in all a splendid collection of original and scholarly essays.’ — Paul Diffley, Italian Studies LVII, 2002, 167-8
  • notice, The Year's Work in Modern Languages 62, 2000, 395

Mediterranean Travels: Writing Self and Other from the Ancient World to Contemporary Society
Edited by Patrick Crowley, Noreen Humble and Silvia Ross

The Printed Media in Fin-de-siècle Italy: Publishers, Writers, and Readers
Edited by Ann Hallamore Caesar, Gabriella Romani, and Jennifer Burns
Italian Perspectives 21

  • ‘The portrayal of the fin-de-siècle offered by this volume is more articulate and dynamic than the one traditionally depicted... The compelling issues tackled in this volume, together with its thought-provoking approaches, cast a new light on some significant traits of fin-de-siècle Italy.’ — Morena Corradi, Journal of Modern Italian Studies 17.5, 2012, 650-652
  • ‘This collection cogently illustrates how the emerging study of material culture can illuminate fundamental discussions on the development of a national identity... Rather than focusing narrowly on authors and their literary production, these essays paint a vivid picture of the broader world in which these writers lived. In doing so, they show the development of national and cultural identification becoming inextricably linked to the rise of print media and the cultural industry as a whole.’ — Laura A. Salsini, Italica 2013, 304-05
  • ‘This excellent collection of essays (thirteen in all, five written in Italian, eight in English) focuses on the context in which printed media (books, magazines, news- papers, journals) were shaped and appeared at the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries. The text as material object is privileged, while the approach is interdisciplinary. The end result is a different, and more complete, appreciation of the various texts considered here than would be afforded by an analysis confined to content or style.’ — Ursula A. Fanning, Modern Language Review 109.3, July 2014, 824-26

Holocaust Intersections: Genocide and Visual Culture at the New Millennium
Edited by Axel Bangert, Robert S. C. Gordon and Libby Saxton
Moving Image 4

  • ‘The ‘millennium’ of this book’s title stands for the reconstitution of Europe since the end of the Cold War — one effect of which has been an enhanced knowledge of the Holocaust based on archives in the former Eastern Bloc — and for the rise of digital media during the same period.’ — Henry K. Miller, Sight and Sound April 2014, 106

Rethinking Languages in Contact: The Case of Italian
Edited by Anna Laura Lepschy and Arturo Tosi
Studies In Linguistics 2


Opera

Britain and Italy from Romanticism to Modernism: A Festschrift for Peter Brand
Edited by Martin McLaughlin

  • ‘The book concludes with a useful bibliography of Peter Brand’s work and offers a valuable résumé of work in the field since Brand’s pioneering study.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies xxxix/1, 2003, 91
  • ‘This rich and varied collection of essays... a worthy homage to Peter Brand.’ — Carmine G. di Biase, Italica 79.4, 2002, 568-72
  • ‘A volume that, with its interlacing strands, very effectively offers a picture of the complex relationship between two cultures reciprocally illuminating each other in often unpredictable ways.’ — Laura Lepschy, Modern Language Review 98.2, 2003, 482-3
  • ‘Une présentation très claire, dans laquelle toutefois le titre peut paraïtre trompeur, car il resterait à explorer, pendant cette même période, ce qu’apporte précisément cet autre aspect de la culture moderne italienne qu’est par exemple sa production romanesque. On songe à Manzoni (1785-1873) dont l’èuvre reflète à bien des égards le passage du Romantisme au Modernisme.’ — Annie Dubernard Laurent, Revue de Littérature Comparée 3, 2002, 381-3

Sweet Thunder: Music and Libretti in 1960s Italy
Vivienne Suvini-Hand
Italian Perspectives 16

  • ‘Chapter 7 displays the dominating element of the five compositions: the reassertion of spiritual values over the material values of 1960s Italy. This distinctive tone makes these compositions uniquely commendable for further investigations into their influence on Italy’s artistic canon.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 47.1, January 2011
  • ‘A welcome addition to the literature on recent opera, valuable to both the musicologist and the literary scholar... The literary readings are so detailed and sophisticated that it is impossible to do justice to them here... Definitely recommended reading for those with an interest in post-war Italian culture.’ — Emiliano Ricciardi, Cambridge Opera Journal 20.3, 299-302


Photography

Image, Eye and Art in Calvino: Writing Visibility
Edited by Birgitte Grundtvig, Martin McLaughlin and Lene Waage Petersen

  • ‘Andrea Battistini’s chapter, finally, is one of the most enjoyable; it could be defined as the critical equivalent of Eco’s novel La misteriosa fiamma della regina Loana, in the sense that it shows quite convincingly how the "fantastic iconology of cartoons" and comic books is deeply rooted in Calvino’s imagination and how this could be traced in his narrative style, also testifying to the extent of Calvino’s engagement with the products of mass culture.’ — Pierpaolo Antonello, Modern Language Review 104.1, January 2009, 210-12
  • ‘These notes give but a hint of the richness of Image, Eye and Art in Calvino. This is a compelling volume for Calvino scholars; it should also have a strong appeal for those more generally interested in the relation between the verbal and the visual.’ — Luca Pocci, Angles on the English-Speaking World 8, 2008, 127-29
  • ‘A vital tool for further research not only into the works of Calvino but also into the contemporary cultural interweaving of literature and the arts.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 47.1, January 2011


Sociolinguistics

Orality and Literacy in Modern Italian Culture
Edited by Michael Caesar and Marina Spunta
Italian Perspectives 14

  • ‘Other strands link the twelve essays: one centres on the idea that ‘voice’ is something vulnerable and short-lived, while another focuses on the ‘hierarchy’ implicit in the relationship between orality and literacy. Both are demonstrated, for instance, when ‘folk’, ‘women’s’ and ‘youth’ cultures are ‘textualised’ and thus potentially destroyed, rather than preserved, in writing, leading to the hypothesis that ‘orality’ is, essentially, irreproducible as ‘literacy’.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 46.2, 2010, 247-48


Survey works

Women in Italian Renaissance Culture and Society
Edited by Letizia Panizza

  • ‘In her introduction Letizia Panizza writes that one of the aims of the collection is to recover neglected areas of Italian culture and society, which she has done... Many of the essays are quite good; all are informative.’ — Elissa B. Weaver, Renaissance Quarterly 2002, 713-15
  • ‘Offers a vast and well-organized view of the position that early modern women occupied in Italy from 1400 to 1650... I highly recommend the collection.’ — Rinaldini Russell, Forum Italicum 36.1, 2002, 214-15
  • ‘The above is merely a fraction of the content. There is certainly richness in this volume. Many branches of scholarship gain by having these articles in print and they are an eloquent testimony to the vitality of scholarship in this area.’ — Olwen Hufton, Modern Language Review 97.1, 2002
  • ‘This excellent book of essays... retains the liveliness and originality of the conference held at Royal Holloway, University of London, ... with the added bonus that all those given in Italian have been translated, so that — as the editor says — we can benefit from the work of many specialists, some of whose work has not previously been available in English.’ — Alison Brown, Italian Studies LVII, 2002, 171-2
  • ‘Without doubt, the most important volume yet published in English on the specific contribution of women to culture and society in Italy in the Renaissance... The coherence of the volume is assured by a number of overarching themes.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies XXXIX, 2003, 480

Pastoral Drama in Early Modern Italy: The Making of a New Genre
Lisa Sampson
Italian Perspectives 15

  • ‘Handsomely produced (a tribute to its publishers and copy-editor), meticulously researched, agreeably written,with copious notes, a generous bibliography, and English translationsof all the original quotations, it is packed full with fascinating and thought-provoking information.’ — Eric Haywood, Modern Language Review 103.4, October 2008, 1138
  • ‘Vanno complimentati, infine, anche gli editori di Legenda (la fruttuosa collaborazione tra Maney Publishing e la Modern Humanities Research Association) che hanno curato questa pubblicazione impeccabile, e che hanno dato ampio spazio — scelta felice — ai citati originali in italiano (provveduti sempre di una traduzione inglese della stessa studiosa). In aggiunta alle note concise poste alla fine di ogni capitolo, la bibliografia e l’indice generale che concludono il libro costituiranno un utile strumento di consultazione ai molti studenti e ricercatori che troveranno una ricchissima fonte d’informazioni preziose (dalla descrizione meticolosa delle innumerevoli opere individuali, al contesto sociale, culturale e politico sempre ottimamente documentato) in questa monografia, la quale combina una chiarezza di argomentazione con un’analisi sfaccettata di un fenomeno significativo — se non proprio determinante — nel campo culturale della prima epoca moderna.’ — Rolien Scheffer, Italian Studies 64.2, Autumn 2009

Imagining Terrorism: The Rhetoric and Representation of Political Violence in Italy 1969-2009
Edited by Pierpaolo Antonello and Alan O’Leary
Italian Perspectives 18

  • ‘This is a thought-provoking collection that requires the reader to engage with representations and form as critical sites of historical understanding.’ — Derek Duncan, Modern Language Review 106.3, 2011, 889-90
  • ‘For many, the murder of former Prime Minister Aldo Moro in 1978 by the BR and the various neofascist bombings have become myths or legendary occurrences ones fraught with profound meaning for the human condition. Even some of the former militants and terrorists — the perpetrators, in other words — have participated in these productions (Moro’s killers, for example). In fact, one cannot help be left with the impression that the artists and the ex-militants are really talking to each other.’ — Leonard Weinberg, Journal of Modern History 84.3 (September 2012), 752-54
  • ‘This broad-ranging collection of fourteen essays is innovative in offering an extremely rich and multi-faceted portrait of this complex topic... makes a real contribution to show how terrorist brutality was expressed, encoded and schematized by the people involved in these dramatic events even before the violent actions became the object of rhetorical analysis.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 48.4 (October 2012), 490

Boccaccio and the Book: Production and Reading in Italy 1340-1520
Rhiannon Daniels
Italian Perspectives 19

  • ‘This descriptive study provides many details that will benefit any scholar interested in the reception of Boccaccio’s works before the transformations they undergo in the later Cinquecento.’ — Martin Eisner, Renaissance Quarterly 63.2, 2010, 545-46
  • ‘Original and highly detailed... Chapter 1 could usefully be recommended to students of the history of the book in Italy for the clarity with which it presents all of the aspects that need to be considered in a discussion of readership, reception, production, and paratext, in both manuscripts and printed books... A significant contribution to the history of the book in Italy.’ — Jane Everson, Modern Language Review 106.2, April 2011, 564-66
  • ‘This book is a valuable and stimulating contribution to the reception history of Boccaccio. Particularly interesting is the way that Daniels looks at manuscripts and printed editions that have not been given their due, and the reader will constantly come across intriguing details.’ — K. P. Clarke, Medium Aevum 74, 2010

The Tradition of the Actor-Author in Italian Theatre
Edited by Donatella Fischer
Italian Perspectives 27

Likenesses: Translation, Illustration, Interpretation
Matthew Reynolds
Studies In Comparative Literature 30


Television

Holocaust Intersections: Genocide and Visual Culture at the New Millennium
Edited by Axel Bangert, Robert S. C. Gordon and Libby Saxton
Moving Image 4

  • ‘The ‘millennium’ of this book’s title stands for the reconstitution of Europe since the end of the Cold War — one effect of which has been an enhanced knowledge of the Holocaust based on archives in the former Eastern Bloc — and for the rise of digital media during the same period.’ — Henry K. Miller, Sight and Sound April 2014, 106


The City

From Florence to the Heavenly City: The Poetry of Citizenship in Dante
Claire E. Honess
Italian Perspectives 13


Utopian thought

Pastoral Drama in Early Modern Italy: The Making of a New Genre
Lisa Sampson
Italian Perspectives 15

  • ‘Handsomely produced (a tribute to its publishers and copy-editor), meticulously researched, agreeably written,with copious notes, a generous bibliography, and English translationsof all the original quotations, it is packed full with fascinating and thought-provoking information.’ — Eric Haywood, Modern Language Review 103.4, October 2008, 1138
  • ‘Vanno complimentati, infine, anche gli editori di Legenda (la fruttuosa collaborazione tra Maney Publishing e la Modern Humanities Research Association) che hanno curato questa pubblicazione impeccabile, e che hanno dato ampio spazio — scelta felice — ai citati originali in italiano (provveduti sempre di una traduzione inglese della stessa studiosa). In aggiunta alle note concise poste alla fine di ogni capitolo, la bibliografia e l’indice generale che concludono il libro costituiranno un utile strumento di consultazione ai molti studenti e ricercatori che troveranno una ricchissima fonte d’informazioni preziose (dalla descrizione meticolosa delle innumerevoli opere individuali, al contesto sociale, culturale e politico sempre ottimamente documentato) in questa monografia, la quale combina una chiarezza di argomentazione con un’analisi sfaccettata di un fenomeno significativo — se non proprio determinante — nel campo culturale della prima epoca moderna.’ — Rolien Scheffer, Italian Studies 64.2, Autumn 2009


Epicurus (341-270 BCE), Athenian philosopher

Dante and Epicurus: A Dualistic Vision of Secular and Spiritual Fulfilment
George Corbett
Italian Perspectives 25

  • ‘Considered from the point of view of what Corbett’s book has to say about Dante and one of the—theologically speaking—more problematic spirits on his horizon, it is to be welcomed, its sense of Dante’s appreciation of an Epicurus notable for something other than mere sensuality but wedded, even so, to a species of mortalism making inevitably for his reprobation within the Christian scheme of things emerging from it both clearly and convincingly.’ — John Took, Speculum 89.2, April 2014, 466-68
  • ‘George Corbett writes with great clarity and logic, drawing on a wide range of resources from early commentators (among whom he moves with ease) and the whole of Dante’s œuvre to a host of modern Dante critics. Points of comparison and continuity rather than of palinodic rewriting are sought between the Commedia and the ‘minor works’, and the author is bold and confident in his challenges to various prevalent critical assumptions. The ambiguities surrounding Epicurus before and during Dante’s day are persuasively elucidated, with good, nuanced background on mediators such as Cicero, Augustine, and Albert the Great.’ — Jennifer Rushworth, Modern Language Review 109.3, July 2014, 821-22


Dante Alighieri (1265-1321), Italian poet

Britain and Italy from Romanticism to Modernism: A Festschrift for Peter Brand
Edited by Martin McLaughlin

  • ‘The book concludes with a useful bibliography of Peter Brand’s work and offers a valuable résumé of work in the field since Brand’s pioneering study.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies xxxix/1, 2003, 91
  • ‘This rich and varied collection of essays... a worthy homage to Peter Brand.’ — Carmine G. di Biase, Italica 79.4, 2002, 568-72
  • ‘A volume that, with its interlacing strands, very effectively offers a picture of the complex relationship between two cultures reciprocally illuminating each other in often unpredictable ways.’ — Laura Lepschy, Modern Language Review 98.2, 2003, 482-3
  • ‘Une présentation très claire, dans laquelle toutefois le titre peut paraïtre trompeur, car il resterait à explorer, pendant cette même période, ce qu’apporte précisément cet autre aspect de la culture moderne italienne qu’est par exemple sa production romanesque. On songe à Manzoni (1785-1873) dont l’èuvre reflète à bien des égards le passage du Romantisme au Modernisme.’ — Annie Dubernard Laurent, Revue de Littérature Comparée 3, 2002, 381-3

Dante in Oxford: The Paget Toynbee Lectures
Edited by Tristan Kay, Martin McLaughlin and Michelangelo Zaccarello

  • ‘A welcome addition to the ocean of Dante studies.’ — John A. Scott, Modern Language Review 108.2 (April 2013), 648-50

Dante the Lyric and Ethical Poet: Dante lirico e etico
Edited by Zygmunt G. Barański and Martin McLaughlin

  • ‘The essay by Justin Steinberg deserves emphasis... it makes a significant contribution to modern Dante scholarship. In a well-argued and well-documented approach, Steinberg discusses Dante’s dreams in Vita nova and the author’s use of dreams to explore questions of truth and fiction.’ — Unn Falkeid, Renaissance Quarterly 64.1, Spring 2011, 157-58

Dante’s Plurilingualism: Authority, Knowledge, Subjectivity
Edited by Sara Fortuna, Manuele Gragnolati and Jürgen Trabant

  • ‘From the introduction to the concluding interview with Giorgio Pressburger, this volume of essays is characterized by both authoritative contributions from major figures in Dante studies (Baranski, Gragnolati, Pertile) and also by genuinely original lines of enquiry. Dante’s Plurilingualism constitutes an indispensable point of reference for contemporary Dante studies, an ideal companion to the new Dante editions that have recently appeared, and also acts as a constant spur to reread all of the poet’s works, and to appreciate the ‘plurilingualism’ that is inherent even in those works that that precede the Comedy.’ — Federica Pich, Lettere Italiane 2011, 323-28
  • ‘Although we also find essays that offer a strong historicizing or linguistic focus and others that are powerful contributions to the methodologies and findings traditionally associated with Dante studies, the volume remains of particular note (and importance) for its concern to open Dante up to dialogue across disciplines and to relate him to contemporary debates.’ — Simon Gilson, Modern Language Review 107.1, January 2012, 292-93
  • ‘Colpisce e affascina, in Dante’s Plurilingualism, una ben percepibile disposizione all’audacia interpretativa, al “saggio” come esperimento intellettuale; ciò che convince, nell’insieme, è che non si sia di fronte alla mera esibizione di uno “stile” critico – pur di- versamente delineato –, ma ad un molteplice tentativo di indagine su Dante, inteso come oggetto e al tempo stesso soggetto non tanto di una determinata stagione della lingua e della letteratura italiane, quanto di una più ampia e complessa storia culturale.’ — Martino Marazzi, L'Alighieri 39, June 2012, 160-64
  • ‘Proprio nella lingua che usiamo, con cui scriviamo, possiamo essere convinti che Dante sia arrivato prima di noi e che ci abbia lasciato una grandissima eredità. Gli interventi di questo volume riescono a mettere in evidenza tutti gli aspetti per cui la lingua di Dante e il suo modo di utilizzarla appaiono ancora oggi come un ‘miracolo inconcepibile’.’ — Irene Baccarini, Dante VIII, 2011, 227-30

Desire in Dante and the Middle Ages
Edited by Manuele Gragnolati, Tristan Kay, Elena Lombardi and Francesca Southerden

  • ‘A series of Dante symposia organized by Manuele Gragnolati and colleagues over the past few years have brought youthful vitality to an ancient field... There is much careful scholarship and thoughtful reading in this book, which should attract Dante and medieval studies scholars alike, particularly those interested in contemporary critical approaches to medieval texts.’ — Gary Cestaro, Renaissance Quarterly 66.1 (Spring 2013), 323-24
  • ‘As well as offering several original contributions on this fundamental aspect of Dante’s work, it seeks to situate the Florentine writer more effectively within the broader spectrum of medieval culture and to establish greater intellectual exchange between Dante scholars and those from other disciplines.’ — unsigned notice, Studi Medievali 53.2 (2012), 1029-30
  • ‘The essays not only present a rich view of contemporary thinking on medieval notions and expressions of desire but address some of the most compelling issues of modern Dante and medieval scholarship... desire in the medieval context emerges as an issue to be expressed through the unique capabilities of poetry, an experience to be physically, spiritually, and emotionally undergone, and, ultimately, a state to be manifested in the very act of writing.’ — Ruth Chester, Modern Language Review 109.1, January 2014, 221-22
  • ‘This is a well-conceived collection, with an excellent bibliography, that will be valuable both for Dante scholars and every medievalist or early modernist with an interest in topics related to desire: the body, perception, memory, mysticism, just to name a few. The volume achieves a rare balance of interdisciplinarity and cohesiveness, bringing together approaches to the text as diverse as queer theory and translation studies, but maintaining a common intent to map desire as a hermeneutic tool in Dante studies and beyond.’ — Eleonora Stoppino, Speculum 89.3, 2014, 773-74

Metaphor in Dante
David Gibbons

  • ‘David Gibbon’s book is a fascinating and subtle investigation of Dante’s dazzling and experimental use of metaphors in the Divine Comedy. ... an important and notewhorty contribution to the understanding of Dante’s use, creation, and renewal of the poetic language.’ — Paola Nasti, Modern Language Review 100.1, 2005, 229-30
  • ‘Not only is Gibbons alert to the complexity of the question generally — at once historical, hermeneutical, dialectical, and literary-aesthetic in kind — but his analysis of the texts he invokes is both sensitive and illuminating as regards the variety of Dante’s imagery and its functionality within the poem as a whole.’ — John Took, Italian Studies Volume LIX, 2004, 153-4

Science and Literature in Italian Culture: From Dante to Calvino
Edited by Pierpaolo Antonello and Simon A. Gilson

  • ‘Legenda’s elegantly produced volume is all things to all people. It does discuss literature and science, but its miscellany is all the more enjoyable for not being tightly constrained by a potentially dogmatic, even questionable, unifying theme of "L&S".’ — J. R. Woodhouse, Modern Language Review 100.3, 7 July 2005, 845-48
  • Speculum October 2005, 1404

From Florence to the Heavenly City: The Poetry of Citizenship in Dante
Claire E. Honess
Italian Perspectives 13

Dante and Epicurus: A Dualistic Vision of Secular and Spiritual Fulfilment
George Corbett
Italian Perspectives 25

  • ‘Considered from the point of view of what Corbett’s book has to say about Dante and one of the—theologically speaking—more problematic spirits on his horizon, it is to be welcomed, its sense of Dante’s appreciation of an Epicurus notable for something other than mere sensuality but wedded, even so, to a species of mortalism making inevitably for his reprobation within the Christian scheme of things emerging from it both clearly and convincingly.’ — John Took, Speculum 89.2, April 2014, 466-68
  • ‘George Corbett writes with great clarity and logic, drawing on a wide range of resources from early commentators (among whom he moves with ease) and the whole of Dante’s œuvre to a host of modern Dante critics. Points of comparison and continuity rather than of palinodic rewriting are sought between the Commedia and the ‘minor works’, and the author is bold and confident in his challenges to various prevalent critical assumptions. The ambiguities surrounding Epicurus before and during Dante’s day are persuasively elucidated, with good, nuanced background on mediators such as Cicero, Augustine, and Albert the Great.’ — Jennifer Rushworth, Modern Language Review 109.3, July 2014, 821-22

Likenesses: Translation, Illustration, Interpretation
Matthew Reynolds
Studies In Comparative Literature 30


Giovanni Boccaccio (1313-75), Italian poet

Boccaccio and the Book: Production and Reading in Italy 1340-1520
Rhiannon Daniels
Italian Perspectives 19

  • ‘This descriptive study provides many details that will benefit any scholar interested in the reception of Boccaccio’s works before the transformations they undergo in the later Cinquecento.’ — Martin Eisner, Renaissance Quarterly 63.2, 2010, 545-46
  • ‘Original and highly detailed... Chapter 1 could usefully be recommended to students of the history of the book in Italy for the clarity with which it presents all of the aspects that need to be considered in a discussion of readership, reception, production, and paratext, in both manuscripts and printed books... A significant contribution to the history of the book in Italy.’ — Jane Everson, Modern Language Review 106.2, April 2011, 564-66
  • ‘This book is a valuable and stimulating contribution to the reception history of Boccaccio. Particularly interesting is the way that Daniels looks at manuscripts and printed editions that have not been given their due, and the reader will constantly come across intriguing details.’ — K. P. Clarke, Medium Aevum 74, 2010


Torquato Tasso (1544-95), Italian poet

The Epic Rhetoric of Tasso: Theory and Practice
Maggie Günsberg

  • ‘Günsberg examines her material with great accuracy... deals with important aspects of Tasso’s thought and poetical practice in a meticulous way, and can be useful both for readers attached to traditional rhetorical categories and for those with an interest in more recent critical developments.’ — Laura Benedetti, Italian Studies LIV, 1999, 177-8
  • ‘An attractive and interesting volume that provides a useful addition to the comparatively thin recent output of Tasso scholarship in this country.’ — Peter Brand, Modern Language Review 95.3, 2000, 857-8


Miguel de Cervantes (1547-1616), Spanish novelist

Textual Wanderings: The Theory and Practice of Narrative Digression
Edited by Rhian Atkin


Giordano Bruno (1548-1600), Italian natural philosopher

Science and Literature in Italian Culture: From Dante to Calvino
Edited by Pierpaolo Antonello and Simon A. Gilson

  • ‘Legenda’s elegantly produced volume is all things to all people. It does discuss literature and science, but its miscellany is all the more enjoyable for not being tightly constrained by a potentially dogmatic, even questionable, unifying theme of "L&S".’ — J. R. Woodhouse, Modern Language Review 100.3, 7 July 2005, 845-48
  • Speculum October 2005, 1404


Laurence Sterne (1713-69), English novelist

Textual Wanderings: The Theory and Practice of Narrative Digression
Edited by Rhian Atkin


Ugo Foscolo (1778-1827), Italian/Greek poet and revolutionary

Ugo Foscolo and English Culture
Sandra Parmegiani
Italian Perspectives 20

  • ‘Partecipe di un consistente e costruttivo dialogo critico con altri studiosi, Parmegiani non trascura di sondare, nel corso della propria disamina, il circostante terreno di ricerca presentando al lettore un resoconto attento ed attuale. Il libro costituisce in questa prospettiva un compendio indispensabile agli studi, tuttora in fieri, sui variegati rapporti intrattenuti da Foscolo con la cultura inglese. A questo elaborato mosaico Parmegiani ha avuto il merito di aggiungere con la propria indagine un autorevole tassello mancante.’ — Maria Giulia Carone, Annali d'Italianistica 2012
  • ‘A well written and highly informative account of Foscolo’s career... Most readers of The Shandean will think of Foscolo predominantly as the translator of Sterne: it is fascinating to read of his attempts to make a literary career in London in the last decade of his life where, encouraged by John Cam Hobhouse, he crosses paths (and often swords) with such luminaries as Wordsworth, Byron, Samuel Rogers, Thomas Moore, John Murray, and Sir Walter Scott.’ — W. G. Day, The Shandean 167-72
  • ‘This book proves itself to be extremely important for a more global and at the same detailed analysis of Italian proto-Romanticism and Romanticism from a comparatively European viewpoint... The result is a convincing portrayal of Foscolo’s relationship with English culture, which will surely be helpful for both the Italian and Anglo-Saxon scholarships in Italian studies, as well as for the broader community of scholars in eighteenth-century and Romantic studies.’ — Fabio Camilletti, Journal of Modern Italian Studies 18.3, 2013, 364-65


Giacomo Leopardi (1798-1837), Italian poet

Leopardi’s Nymphs: Grace, Melancholy, and the Uncanny
Fabio A. Camilletti
Italian Perspectives 28  


Robert Browning (1812-89), English poet

Likenesses: Translation, Illustration, Interpretation
Matthew Reynolds
Studies In Comparative Literature 30


John Ruskin (1819-1900), English critic

Britain and Italy from Romanticism to Modernism: A Festschrift for Peter Brand
Edited by Martin McLaughlin

  • ‘The book concludes with a useful bibliography of Peter Brand’s work and offers a valuable résumé of work in the field since Brand’s pioneering study.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies xxxix/1, 2003, 91
  • ‘This rich and varied collection of essays... a worthy homage to Peter Brand.’ — Carmine G. di Biase, Italica 79.4, 2002, 568-72
  • ‘A volume that, with its interlacing strands, very effectively offers a picture of the complex relationship between two cultures reciprocally illuminating each other in often unpredictable ways.’ — Laura Lepschy, Modern Language Review 98.2, 2003, 482-3
  • ‘Une présentation très claire, dans laquelle toutefois le titre peut paraïtre trompeur, car il resterait à explorer, pendant cette même période, ce qu’apporte précisément cet autre aspect de la culture moderne italienne qu’est par exemple sa production romanesque. On songe à Manzoni (1785-1873) dont l’èuvre reflète à bien des égards le passage du Romantisme au Modernisme.’ — Annie Dubernard Laurent, Revue de Littérature Comparée 3, 2002, 381-3


Italo Svevo (1861-1928), Italian novelist

Biographies and Autobiographies in Modern Italy — A Festschrift for John Woodhouse
Edited by Martin McLaughlin and Peter Hainsworth

  • ‘Hainsworth and McLaughlin open the volume with a succinct, clear and meaty disquisition on the nature of biography and autobiography. Their Introduction furnishes, in lively prose, an overview of the state of such writing in Italy... A fascinating glimpse into the life histories, and the shaping of life histories, by an eclectic group of Italians. Its chapters provide useful information on the less-known and engrossing new insights into familiar canonical figures.’ — Risa Sodi, Biography 32.3, Summer 2009, pp. 562-65
  • ‘These pieces all share John Woodhouse’s sentiment that the life lived and written by an author are "mutually illuminating" and that writing loses much when "seen solely within the terms of a textual universe".’ — unsigned, Forum for Modern Language Studies 46.1, January 2010, 107-08

Giraffes in the Garden of Italian Literature: Modernist Embodiment in Italo Svevo, Federigo Tozzi and Carlo Emilio Gadda
Deborah Amberson
Italian Perspectives 22

  • ‘In conclusion, this is a very interesting book, which not only brings together three exceptional authors, but also focuses on original and stimulating perspectives. The work makes a very valid critical contribution, by dealing with a fascinating topic in a manner which is original and insightful.’ — Giuseppe Stellardi, Modern Language Review 109.3, July 2014, 828-29

Disrupted Narratives: Illness, Silence and Identity in Svevo, Pressburger and Morandini
Emma Bond
Italian Perspectives 24


Luigi Pirandello (1867-1936), Italian playwright

Authorial Echoes: Textuality and Self-Plagiarism in the Narrative of Luigi Pirandello
Catherine O’Rawe

  • ‘A short review cannot do justice to this arresting critical work. A combination of bold ideas with a meticulous attention to detail and a broad theoretical foundation characterizes O’Rawe’s critical approach. Insights are always well substantiated with abundant evidence... Both a major contribution to Pirandello scholarship and a seminal challenge to narrative criticism.’ — Jennifer Lorch, Modern Language Review 103.4, October 2008, 1140-41


Federigo Tozzi (1883-1920), Italian novelist

Giraffes in the Garden of Italian Literature: Modernist Embodiment in Italo Svevo, Federigo Tozzi and Carlo Emilio Gadda
Deborah Amberson
Italian Perspectives 22

  • ‘In conclusion, this is a very interesting book, which not only brings together three exceptional authors, but also focuses on original and stimulating perspectives. The work makes a very valid critical contribution, by dealing with a fascinating topic in a manner which is original and insightful.’ — Giuseppe Stellardi, Modern Language Review 109.3, July 2014, 828-29


Carlo Emilio Gadda (1893-1973), Italian novelist

Science and Literature in Italian Culture: From Dante to Calvino
Edited by Pierpaolo Antonello and Simon A. Gilson

  • ‘Legenda’s elegantly produced volume is all things to all people. It does discuss literature and science, but its miscellany is all the more enjoyable for not being tightly constrained by a potentially dogmatic, even questionable, unifying theme of "L&S".’ — J. R. Woodhouse, Modern Language Review 100.3, 7 July 2005, 845-48
  • Speculum October 2005, 1404

Giraffes in the Garden of Italian Literature: Modernist Embodiment in Italo Svevo, Federigo Tozzi and Carlo Emilio Gadda
Deborah Amberson
Italian Perspectives 22

  • ‘In conclusion, this is a very interesting book, which not only brings together three exceptional authors, but also focuses on original and stimulating perspectives. The work makes a very valid critical contribution, by dealing with a fascinating topic in a manner which is original and insightful.’ — Giuseppe Stellardi, Modern Language Review 109.3, July 2014, 828-29


Eugenio Montale (1896-1981), Italian poet

Biographies and Autobiographies in Modern Italy — A Festschrift for John Woodhouse
Edited by Martin McLaughlin and Peter Hainsworth

  • ‘Hainsworth and McLaughlin open the volume with a succinct, clear and meaty disquisition on the nature of biography and autobiography. Their Introduction furnishes, in lively prose, an overview of the state of such writing in Italy... A fascinating glimpse into the life histories, and the shaping of life histories, by an eclectic group of Italians. Its chapters provide useful information on the less-known and engrossing new insights into familiar canonical figures.’ — Risa Sodi, Biography 32.3, Summer 2009, pp. 562-65
  • ‘These pieces all share John Woodhouse’s sentiment that the life lived and written by an author are "mutually illuminating" and that writing loses much when "seen solely within the terms of a textual universe".’ — unsigned, Forum for Modern Language Studies 46.1, January 2010, 107-08

Eugenio Montale: The Poetry of the Later Years
Éanna Ó Ceallacháin

  • ‘Explores the ways in which Montale demystifies his own status as a great modernist, satirizes historical progress and current social life, places himself as a ‘ghost’ among other ghosts, awaiting his dissolution into non-being which may or may not imply some hidden divine presence, and enters into the ‘trivial’ contingencies of everyday life... From what may have been the old poet’s isolated and disillusioned position, he hits the mark time and again, as this well-crafted study shows.’ — Rebecca West, Modern Language Review 98.2, 2003, 479-80
  • ‘Let me declare myself at the outset: this is an excellent piece of work. It is the quintessence of scholarship: meticulously researched, methodologically sound and lucidly written... I cannot emphasise strongly enough the importance of this volume: every student of Montale should be encouraged to read Ó Ceallacháin’s perceptive, and above all, comprehensible interpretations of Montale’s later poetry. It goes without saying that the notes, bibliography and indices are impeccably produced.’ — Elizabeth Schächter, Italian Studies LVIII, 2003
  • ‘Effectively charts the continuities and changes in the the relationship between the poet and his history.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies XL.2, April 2004, 237


Eduardo De Filippo (1900-84), Italian playwright

Il teatro di Eduardo De Filippo: La crisi della famiglia patriarcale
Donatella Fischer
Italian Perspectives 17


Cesare Pavese (1908-50), Italian novelist

Secrets and Puzzles: Silence and the Unsaid in Contemporary Italian Writing
Nicoletta Simborowski

  • ‘Simborowski’s book provides a novel, interpretative angle for some of the most studied authors of 20th century Italian literature, inviting a reading which overcomes the limitations of the said by engaging the reader in an operation of ‘voicing the silence.’ The book is clearly written and Simborowski’s positions convincingly argued.’ — Nicoletta Di Ciolla McGowan, Forum Italicum 38/1, 2004, 267-9
  • ‘This book throws new light on a crucial period of Italian culture. In the analysis of silence and the unsaid it provides a key for interpretation, which works well (although not infallibly), and which highlights fundamental issues in Italian literature of the second half of the twentieth century.’ — Olivia Santovetti, Modern Language Review 100.3, 7 July 2005, 843-44
  • ‘Secrets and Puzzles foregrounds and consolidates an important interpretative issue, offering a new perspective on mainstream authors and a new critical context in which to view other writers of the post-war period. An impressive contribution to the study, at undergraduate level and beyond, of contemporary Italian literature.’ — Jennifer Burns, Italian Studies 60.1, 2005, 111-12


Elsa Morante (1912-85), Italian novelist

The Power of Disturbance: Elsa Morante’s Aracoeli
Edited by Sara Fortuna and Manuele Gragnolati

  • ‘The chapters avail themselves of the entire arc of twentieth-century theories and models of subjectivity and sexuality, to try to unravel Manuele’s search for freedom from his all-consuming passion for his mother Aracoeli, and include Freud, Jung, Klein, Bowlby, Stern, Sander, Winnicott, Laplanche and Pontalis, Kristeva, Lacan, Cavarero, Muraro, Silverman, (Jessica) Benjamin, and Butler. These theories serve the novel very well, illuminating the many strands and aspects of Manuele’s ‘condition’ and of the novel... An invaluable teaching tool and thus an incentive to include Aracoeli in advanced university courses in Italian and European literature.’ — Adalgisa Giorgio, Italian Studies 66.1, March 2011, 144-46


Aldo Moro (1916-78), Italian politician

Speaking Out and Silencing: Culture, Society and Politics in Italy in the 1970s
Edited by Anna Cento Bull and Adalgisa Giorgio
Italian Perspectives 12

  • ‘An excellent analysis of the 1970s... important new insights into the anni di piombo.’ — Liz Wren-Owens, Modern Language Review 104.1, January 2009, 213-14
  • ‘Each of these essays confirms that terrorism is an ineluctable topic in any discussion of the long 1970s... Indeed, the two longest entries in the index to the volume are for ‘terrorism’ and for ‘Moro, Aldo’. Aldo Moro is all over the book, just as he is uncannily omnipresent in Italian culture...’ — Alan O'Leary, Modern Italy 13.3, August 2008, 361-63

Imagining Terrorism: The Rhetoric and Representation of Political Violence in Italy 1969-2009
Edited by Pierpaolo Antonello and Alan O’Leary
Italian Perspectives 18

  • ‘This is a thought-provoking collection that requires the reader to engage with representations and form as critical sites of historical understanding.’ — Derek Duncan, Modern Language Review 106.3, 2011, 889-90
  • ‘For many, the murder of former Prime Minister Aldo Moro in 1978 by the BR and the various neofascist bombings have become myths or legendary occurrences ones fraught with profound meaning for the human condition. Even some of the former militants and terrorists — the perpetrators, in other words — have participated in these productions (Moro’s killers, for example). In fact, one cannot help be left with the impression that the artists and the ex-militants are really talking to each other.’ — Leonard Weinberg, Journal of Modern History 84.3 (September 2012), 752-54
  • ‘This broad-ranging collection of fourteen essays is innovative in offering an extremely rich and multi-faceted portrait of this complex topic... makes a real contribution to show how terrorist brutality was expressed, encoded and schematized by the people involved in these dramatic events even before the violent actions became the object of rhetorical analysis.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 48.4 (October 2012), 490

Remembering Aldo Moro: The Cultural Legacy of the 1978 Kidnapping and Murder
Edited by Ruth Glynn and Giancarlo Lombardi
Italian Perspectives 23


Natalia Ginzburg (1916-91), Italian novelist

Secrets and Puzzles: Silence and the Unsaid in Contemporary Italian Writing
Nicoletta Simborowski

  • ‘Simborowski’s book provides a novel, interpretative angle for some of the most studied authors of 20th century Italian literature, inviting a reading which overcomes the limitations of the said by engaging the reader in an operation of ‘voicing the silence.’ The book is clearly written and Simborowski’s positions convincingly argued.’ — Nicoletta Di Ciolla McGowan, Forum Italicum 38/1, 2004, 267-9
  • ‘This book throws new light on a crucial period of Italian culture. In the analysis of silence and the unsaid it provides a key for interpretation, which works well (although not infallibly), and which highlights fundamental issues in Italian literature of the second half of the twentieth century.’ — Olivia Santovetti, Modern Language Review 100.3, 7 July 2005, 843-44
  • ‘Secrets and Puzzles foregrounds and consolidates an important interpretative issue, offering a new perspective on mainstream authors and a new critical context in which to view other writers of the post-war period. An impressive contribution to the study, at undergraduate level and beyond, of contemporary Italian literature.’ — Jennifer Burns, Italian Studies 60.1, 2005, 111-12


Primo Levi (1919-87), Italian writer

Biographies and Autobiographies in Modern Italy — A Festschrift for John Woodhouse
Edited by Martin McLaughlin and Peter Hainsworth

  • ‘Hainsworth and McLaughlin open the volume with a succinct, clear and meaty disquisition on the nature of biography and autobiography. Their Introduction furnishes, in lively prose, an overview of the state of such writing in Italy... A fascinating glimpse into the life histories, and the shaping of life histories, by an eclectic group of Italians. Its chapters provide useful information on the less-known and engrossing new insights into familiar canonical figures.’ — Risa Sodi, Biography 32.3, Summer 2009, pp. 562-65
  • ‘These pieces all share John Woodhouse’s sentiment that the life lived and written by an author are "mutually illuminating" and that writing loses much when "seen solely within the terms of a textual universe".’ — unsigned, Forum for Modern Language Studies 46.1, January 2010, 107-08

Secrets and Puzzles: Silence and the Unsaid in Contemporary Italian Writing
Nicoletta Simborowski

  • ‘Simborowski’s book provides a novel, interpretative angle for some of the most studied authors of 20th century Italian literature, inviting a reading which overcomes the limitations of the said by engaging the reader in an operation of ‘voicing the silence.’ The book is clearly written and Simborowski’s positions convincingly argued.’ — Nicoletta Di Ciolla McGowan, Forum Italicum 38/1, 2004, 267-9
  • ‘This book throws new light on a crucial period of Italian culture. In the analysis of silence and the unsaid it provides a key for interpretation, which works well (although not infallibly), and which highlights fundamental issues in Italian literature of the second half of the twentieth century.’ — Olivia Santovetti, Modern Language Review 100.3, 7 July 2005, 843-44
  • ‘Secrets and Puzzles foregrounds and consolidates an important interpretative issue, offering a new perspective on mainstream authors and a new critical context in which to view other writers of the post-war period. An impressive contribution to the study, at undergraduate level and beyond, of contemporary Italian literature.’ — Jennifer Burns, Italian Studies 60.1, 2005, 111-12


Italo Calvino (1923-85), Italian novelist

Image, Eye and Art in Calvino: Writing Visibility
Edited by Birgitte Grundtvig, Martin McLaughlin and Lene Waage Petersen

  • ‘Andrea Battistini’s chapter, finally, is one of the most enjoyable; it could be defined as the critical equivalent of Eco’s novel La misteriosa fiamma della regina Loana, in the sense that it shows quite convincingly how the "fantastic iconology of cartoons" and comic books is deeply rooted in Calvino’s imagination and how this could be traced in his narrative style, also testifying to the extent of Calvino’s engagement with the products of mass culture.’ — Pierpaolo Antonello, Modern Language Review 104.1, January 2009, 210-12
  • ‘These notes give but a hint of the richness of Image, Eye and Art in Calvino. This is a compelling volume for Calvino scholars; it should also have a strong appeal for those more generally interested in the relation between the verbal and the visual.’ — Luca Pocci, Angles on the English-Speaking World 8, 2008, 127-29
  • ‘A vital tool for further research not only into the works of Calvino but also into the contemporary cultural interweaving of literature and the arts.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 47.1, January 2011


Francesca Sanvitale (1928-2011), Italian novelist

Secrets and Puzzles: Silence and the Unsaid in Contemporary Italian Writing
Nicoletta Simborowski

  • ‘Simborowski’s book provides a novel, interpretative angle for some of the most studied authors of 20th century Italian literature, inviting a reading which overcomes the limitations of the said by engaging the reader in an operation of ‘voicing the silence.’ The book is clearly written and Simborowski’s positions convincingly argued.’ — Nicoletta Di Ciolla McGowan, Forum Italicum 38/1, 2004, 267-9
  • ‘This book throws new light on a crucial period of Italian culture. In the analysis of silence and the unsaid it provides a key for interpretation, which works well (although not infallibly), and which highlights fundamental issues in Italian literature of the second half of the twentieth century.’ — Olivia Santovetti, Modern Language Review 100.3, 7 July 2005, 843-44
  • ‘Secrets and Puzzles foregrounds and consolidates an important interpretative issue, offering a new perspective on mainstream authors and a new critical context in which to view other writers of the post-war period. An impressive contribution to the study, at undergraduate level and beyond, of contemporary Italian literature.’ — Jennifer Burns, Italian Studies 60.1, 2005, 111-12


Edoardo Sanguineti (1930-2010), Italian writer and theorist

Edoardo Sanguineti: Literature, Ideology and the Avant-Garde
Edited by Paolo Chirumbolo and John Picchione
Italian Perspectives 26


Giorgio Pressburger (1937-), Italian novelist

Disrupted Narratives: Illness, Silence and Identity in Svevo, Pressburger and Morandini
Emma Bond
Italian Perspectives 24


Giuliana Morandini (1938-), Italian novelist

Disrupted Narratives: Illness, Silence and Identity in Svevo, Pressburger and Morandini
Emma Bond
Italian Perspectives 24