Contemporary Women Writers in Italy

A Modern Renaissance


Despite the range and high quality of their work, Italian women writers have received scant attention from critics, in Italy or elsewhere. All too often, their contributions have gone unrecognized. This collection demonstrates the importance of these writers to the literary world and seeks to bring them the critical attention they deserve. Twelve scholars and literary critics examine some of the best prose produced in recent years by Italian women in a variety of genres, including fiction, journalism, and biography.

Among the writers discussed are Anna Banti, Camilla Cederna, Fausta Cialente, Oriana Fallaci, Natalia Ginzburg, Armanda Guiducci, Gina Lagorio, Gianna Manzini, Dacia Maraini, Elsa Morante, Lalla Romano, and Francesca Sanvitale.

The topics they address range from love, disillusionment, friendship, and family life to artistic vision and the journalistic novel, to political activism, the condition of women in Italy, and the impact of feminism on Italian culture. Although some of the writers discussed describe themselves as feminists, others do not. Similarly, the contributors to the volume represent a spectrum of critical and political perspectives. What emerges is a series of portraits that reflect the variety, dynamism, and creativity of women writers in modern-day Italy.

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