THE NEW ITALIAN POETRY: 1945 to the Present by Lawrence R.--Ed. & Trans. Smith

THE NEW ITALIAN POETRY: 1945 to the Present

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Not unlike the situation in American poetry, contemporary Italian poetry has yet to fully regroup beyond the achievements of its acknowledged early-20th-century masters: Montale, Ungaretti, Quasimodo, Pavese. Unlike the situation in American poetry, the scatter also has very much to do with politics: editor and translator Smith contributes an introduction that clearly outlines the knotty turns and the factionalisms of Italian poets vis à vis writing for, with, against, or oblivious of The People. In categories of ""The New Realism,"" ""The New Hermeticism,"" ""The New Experimentalism,"" and ""The New Avant-Garde"" are distributed, then, 21 poets ranging from the near-operatic works (often in dialect) of Pier Paolo Pasolini to the nouvelle-roman-like drone of Eduardo Sanguinetti. Owing perhaps to Smith's literal, rather felty translations, not much comes off with real tang (luckily, the Italian is interleaved)--but work by Rocco Scotellaro, Elio Pagliarani, Luciano Erba, and Giancarlo Marmori is impressive for different reasons: ethnic, pathetic, linguistic. With politics as its main characteristic, the anthology as a whole most clearly expresses disarray, no voice yet pre-eminent; still, all the pertinent if disparate evidence is offered.

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1981
Publisher: Univ. of Calif. Press