That Stubborn Desire for Life: Re-Reading Leopardi after Mario Martone's film

Oct 13, 2017 338

Giacomo Leopardi lies in the middle of Italian culture as a milestone in the middle of a pathway. His name accompanies everyone who is committed to literature and more in general to the humanities. Hated by students during their high school years, disputed by literary critics because of his cosmic pessimism, reduced to an icon of eternally depressed, still today we face the difficulties to see his true face, both as poet, philosopher and human being. In a difficult language, such as that of the nineteen-century Italian language, very far from our ordinary way of speaking our mother tongue, Giacomo Leopardi continues to talk about human beings and their features, in a timeless framework that embraces human life.

Recently it has been through the movie directed by Mario Martone (Il giovane favoloso, 2014) that a new image of the poet has been raised from the dusty literary panorama in which Leopardi has been put for a long time. One of the merits of the movie has been to put the Recanati poet under a new light: that is, his desire of life in a constant and deep examination of the movements of his soul. The aim of this talk is to show how a careful reading of Leopardi’s works underlines this attitude at work in his masterpieces: a persistent desire of life. 

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