The Printed Media in Fin-de-siècle Italy
Publishers, Writers, and Readers

Edited by Ann Hallamore Caesar, Gabriella Romani, and Jennifer Burns

Italian Perspectives 21


6 July 2011  •  222pp

ISBN: 978-1-906540-74-6 (hardback)  •  RRP £80, $110, €95


The Unification of Italy in 1870 heralded a period of unprecedented change. While successive Liberal governments pursued imperial ventures and took Italy into World War One on the Allied side, on the domestic front technological advance, the creation of a national transport network, the expansion of state education, internal migration to cities and the rise of political associations all contributed to the rapid expansion of the print industry and the development of new and highly diversified reading publics.

Drawing on publishers’ archives, letters, diaries, and printed material, this book provide the most up-to-date research into the printed media - books, magazines and journals - in Italy between 1870 and 1914. With essays on publishers and reading communities, the professionalization of the role of journalist and writer, children’s literature, book illustrations, and printed media in colonial territories among others, this book is intended for those with interests in cultural production and consumption and questions of nation-formation and nationhood in and outside Italy.

Ann Hallamore Caesar is Professor of Italian at the University of Warwick. She has worked extensively on the literature of nineteenth and early twentieth Italy, most recently the co-authored Modern Italian Literature since 1690. A Cultural History (Polity Press: 2007) and she is currently working on the rise of the modern novel in eighteenth century Venice.

Gabriella Romani is Associate Professor of Italian at Seton Hall University. She is the co-editor of Writing to Delight: Nineteenth-Century Short Stories by Italian Women (U. of Toronto Press, 2007); and editor of Edith Bruck, Letter to My Mother (MLA Text and Translation Series, 2006) She is currently completing a book on Nineteenth-Century Postal Culture.


  • ‘The portrayal of the fin-de-siècle offered by this volume is more articulate and dynamic than the one traditionally depicted... The compelling issues tackled in this volume, together with its thought-provoking approaches, cast a new light on some significant traits of fin-de-siècle Italy.’ — Morena Corradi, Journal of Modern Italian Studies 17.5, 2012, 650-652
  • ‘This collection cogently illustrates how the emerging study of material culture can illuminate fundamental discussions on the development of a national identity... Rather than focusing narrowly on authors and their literary production, these essays paint a vivid picture of the broader world in which these writers lived. In doing so, they show the development of national and cultural identification becoming inextricably linked to the rise of print media and the cultural industry as a whole.’ — Laura A. Salsini, Italica 2013, 304-05
  • ‘This excellent collection of essays (thirteen in all, five written in Italian, eight in English) focuses on the context in which printed media (books, magazines, news- papers, journals) were shaped and appeared at the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries. The text as material object is privileged, while the approach is interdisciplinary. The end result is a different, and more complete, appreciation of the various texts considered here than would be afforded by an analysis confined to content or style.’ — Ursula A. Fanning, Modern Language Review 109.3, July 2014, 824-26 (full text online)


Ann Hallamore Caesar, Gabriella Romani
Media, Markets and Modernity: The Italian Case, 1870–1915
John Davis
Reader/Power: The Politics and Poetics of Reading in Post-Unification Italy
Maria Grazia Lolla
Verga Economicus: Language, Money, and Identity in I Malavoglia and Mastro-don Gesualdo
Joseph Luzzi
The Cliché of the Romantic Female Reader and the Paradox of Novelistic Illusion: Federico De Roberto’s L’Illusione (1891)
Olivia Santovetti
Intellettuali militanti, funzionari e tecnologici, etica ed estetica in tre riviste fiorentine d’inizio secolo: Il Regno, La Voce, e Lacerba (1903–1914)
Francesca Billiani
Towards a Literary Modernity all’italiana: A Note on F. T. Marinetti’s Poesia
Luca Somigli
Casa editrice Sonzogno. Mediazione culturale, circuiti del sapere ed innovazione tecnologica nell’Italia unificata (1861–1900)
Silvia Valisa
At the Borders of ‘Dark Africa’: Italian Expeditions to Ethiopia and the Bollettino della Società Geografica Italiana, 1867–1887
Matteo Salvadore
L’editore delle signore: Licinio Cappelli e la narrativa femminile fra Otto e Novecento
Ombretta Frau
Il lettore in copertina. Flirt rivista di splendore e declino (Primo tempo: 1897–1902)
Cristina Gragnani
Abbiamo fatto l’Italia. Adesso si tratta di fare gli Italiani. Il Programma di educazione nazionale del Secolo XX
Fiorenza Weinapple
Printers, Poets, Publishers and Painters: The First Years of the Giornale per i bambini
Fabio Gadducci, Mirko Tavosanis
The Magic Lantern, the Illustrated Book, and the Beginnings of the Culture Industry: Intermediality in Carlo Collodi’s La lanterna magica di Giannettino
John P. Welle

Bibliography entry:

Caesar, Ann Hallamore, Gabriella Romani, and Jennifer Burns (eds), The Printed Media in Fin-de-siècle Italy: Publishers, Writers, and Readers, Italian Perspectives, 21 (Cambridge: Legenda, 2011)

First footnote reference: 35 The Printed Media in Fin-de-siècle Italy: Publishers, Writers, and Readers, ed. by Ann Hallamore Caesar, Gabriella Romani, and Jennifer Burns, Italian Perspectives, 21 (Cambridge: Legenda, 2011), p. 21.

Subsequent footnote reference: 37 Caesar, Romani, and Burns, p. 47.

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

Bibliography entry:

Caesar, Ann Hallamore, Gabriella Romani, and Jennifer Burns (eds). 2011. The Printed Media in Fin-de-siècle Italy: Publishers, Writers, and Readers, Italian Perspectives, 21 (Cambridge: Legenda)

Example citation: ‘A quotation occurring on page 21 of this work’ (Caesar, Romani, and Burns 2011: 21).

Example footnote reference: 35 Caesar, Romani, and Burns 2011: 21.

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

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