British Romanticism and Italian Literature
Edited by Laura Bandiera and Diego Saglia
Drawing on a long-standing tradition of fictional images, British writers of the Romantic period defined and constructed Italy as a land that naturally invites inscription and description. In their works, Italy is a cultural geography so heavily overwritten with discourse that it becomes the natural recipient of further fictional transformations. If critics have frequently attended to this figurative complex and its related Italophilia, what seems to have been left relatively unexplored is the fact that these representations were paralleled and sustained by intense scholarly activities. This volume specifically addresses Romantic-period scholarship about Italian literature, history, and culture under the interconnected rubrics of ‘translating’, ‘reviewing’, and ‘rewriting’. The essays in this book consider this rich field of scholarly activity in order to redraw its contours and examine its connections with the fictional images of Italy and the general fascination with this land and its civilization that are a crucial component of British culture between the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.