Contemporary Italian Women Writers and Traces of the Fantastic
The Creation of Literary Space

Danielle E. Hipkins

Legenda (General Series)

Legenda

24 August 2007  •  240pp

ISBN: 978-1-905981-09-0 (hardback)  •  RRP £75, $99, €85

ISBN: 978-1-351195-35-5 (Taylor & Francis ebook)

ContemporaryItalianFiction


Contemporary fantastic fiction, particularly that written by women, often challenges traditional literary practice. At the same time the predominantly male-authored canon of fantastic literature offers a problematic range of gender stereotypes for female authors to 're-write'. Fantastic tropes, of space in particular, enable three important contemporary Italian female writers (Paola Capriolo, b. 1962; Francesca Duranti, b. 1935 and Rossana Ombres, b. 1931) to encounter and counter anxieties about writing from the female subject position. All three writers begin by exploring the hermetic, fantastic space of enclosure with a critical, or troubled, eye, but eventually opt for wider national, and often international spaces, in which only a 'fantastic trace' remains. This shift mirrors their own increasingly confident distance from male-authored literary models and demonstrates the creative input that these writers bring to the literary canon, by redefining its generic boundaries.

Danielle E. Hipkins is a lecturer in Italian at the University of Exeter.

Reviews:

  • ‘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

Bibliography entry:

Hipkins, Danielle E., Contemporary Italian Women Writers and Traces of the Fantastic: The Creation of Literary Space (Cambridge: Legenda, 2007)

First footnote reference: 35 Danielle E. Hipkins, Contemporary Italian Women Writers and Traces of the Fantastic: The Creation of Literary Space (Cambridge: Legenda, 2007), p. 21.

Subsequent footnote reference: 37 Hipkins, p. 47.

(To see how these citations were worked out, follow this link.)

Bibliography entry:

Hipkins, Danielle E.. 2007. Contemporary Italian Women Writers and Traces of the Fantastic: The Creation of Literary Space (Cambridge: Legenda)

Example citation: ‘A quotation occurring on page 21 of this work’ (Hipkins 2007: 21).

Example footnote reference: 35 Hipkins 2007: 21.

(To see how these citations were worked out, follow this link.)


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