Francesco and Mary Giambelli Foundation Lecture Series: Robert Viscusi presents �The Orphanage: Encounters in Transnational Space�

Francesco and Mary Giambelli Foundation Lecture Series

Robert Viscusi presents his writings on Italian storytelling in a presentation titled “The Orphanage: Encounters in Transnational Space.”

Italian twentieth-century writing began with grandiose visions of empire. Then Italy passed through a period of rapid dispossession during WWI and twenty years of hectic reconstruction and extraordinary pretense under Fascism. At the end of the 1930s and during a second war, Italian culture endured a more total dispossession. When that war ended, Italy awakened into a period of misery and despair. This is not an easy story to tell, and often an impossible one to hear. If one studies the history of Italian storytelling in the twentieth century, this narrative of high ambitions and unbearable catastrophes recurs in many guises.

In this presentation, we will follow some of the episodes of this storytelling under conditions of crippling loss. This is a literary history that is itself as moving as any poem or novel.