AN AUTUMN IN ITALY by Sean O'Faolain


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A successor to A Summer in Italy (1950) records the Irish writer's experiences on a leisurely, observant circuit which runs from Naples to Sicily. Where the former volume dealt with northern towns and was more socio-historical than political, O'Faolain's swing through the south of the boot is an inquiring comment on the interaction of economic, political and moral ideals at work in Italy today. On a route which included such in-between points as Capri, Foggia and Taranto, the author not only outlines Italian religious feeling and traditional background, but provides substantial analyses of American aid and its effect on local farmers, the influence of the communists and some sidelights of the Mafia. Splendid historical reporting, such as Frederick II's Castel del Monte trip, goes hand in hand with an examination of expenditures on social improvements at Foggia- to make this a rewarding kind of reflective journalism. The complex of social interactions is, as always, wispy and illusive. In admitting this and knowing where he cannot pronounce, O'Faolain reveals the borderlines and asks the important questions about a troubled people in a troubled land.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1953
Publisher: Devin-Adair