Padri incapaci nella letteratura italiana femminile (Cardella, Ginzburg)


The father figure in twentieth-century novels usually appears only as a part of the family. It is rare for a father to become the main protagonist of the book; he is frequently presented as an “addition” to the mother. Rightly or not, the father figure is, however, a symbol of authority and power in the family, hence writers have a tendency to present the parent-child relationships as difficult, bitter, and very, very complex. The situation is not much different in modern Italian literature, in which relationships with fathers during childhood are often a starting point for adult problems. In this article, I try to analyze this phenomenon on the basis of two novels written after 1950: Caro Michele by Natalia Ginzburg and Volevo i pantaloni by Lara Cardella.

Cardella, Lara, 1993: Volevo i pantaloni. Stuttgart.

Ferroni, Giulio, 2015: Letteratura italiana contemporanea 1945–2014. Firenze.

Fromm , Erich, 1992: O sztuce miłości. Warszawa: Sagittarius.

Ginzburg, Natalia, 1995: Caro Michele. Milano.

Nocentini, Claudia, 2009: “Rappresentare un’assenza: Caro Michele di Natalia Ginzburg”. In: Littérature et “temps des révoltes” (Italie, 1967–1980), 27, 28, 29 novembre. Lyon.

Pappalardo La Rosa, Franco, 1995: “Caro Michele o dell’inutilità delle parole”. In: Giovanna Ioli (a cura di): Natalia Ginzburg: la casa, la città, la storia. Atti del convegno internazionale, San Salvatore Monferrato, 14–15 maggio 1993. San Salvatore Monferrato: Edizioni della Biennale Piemonte Letteratura.

Pastore, Juditch Laurence, 2000: The Personal is political: gender, generation and memory in Natalia Ginzburg’s “Caro Michele”. In: A.M. Jeannet, G. Sanguinetti Katz (eds.): Natalia Ginzburg: A voice in the twentieth century. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Santoro, Anna, 1996: La condizione della donna. In: Valderice. Società e cultura. A cura di Scuola Media “G. Mazzini”, Banca di Credito Cooperativo Ericina. Valderice.

Ziemska, Maria, 1973: Postawy rodzicielskie. Warszawa: Wiedza Powszechna.

Anna Natkańska