Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Italian Immigrant Radical CultureThe Idealism of the Sovversivi in the United States, 1890-1940$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Marcella Bencivenni

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780814791035

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814791035.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 26 February 2021

Italian American Literary Radicalism

Italian American Literary Radicalism

(p.129) 5 Italian American Literary Radicalism
Italian Immigrant Radical Culture

Marcella Bencivenni

NYU Press

This chapter offers a reevaluation of the Left cultural tradition in Italian Americana, bringing attention to the role of literature and cultural traditions in the making of Italian immigrant radical politics. Recovering hitherto neglected radical texts, it examines two popular literary forms: the novelettes, or short stories, and poetry. Many of these writings were the works of renowned international writers and revered Italian socialist novelists, such as Edmondo De Amicis or Leda Rafanelli Polli. But other stories were written by working-class men and women, who often used pseudonyms or did not even bother to sign their work. The plots varied, but the themes were those typical of proletarian and socialist literature—that is, a literature written for the workers, about workers, and from a left-wing perspective: narratives of political oppression and injustice, working-class life, and revolution. Italian immigrant radical stories and poems included agitators and workers as the main heroes and overt political propaganda as a constitutive part of the text.

Keywords:   Italian Americans, sovversivi, Left cultural tradition, radical texts, novelettes, poetry, political oppression, injustice, working-class

NYU Press Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.