Creative Entanglements: Gadda and the Baroque
Published: September 1999© 1999
192 Pages, 6.31 x 9.28 x 0.72 in
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In an imaginary dialogue with his editor, Carlo Emilio Gadda wrote that 'the world is baroque', adding that as a writer he had simply 'perceived and depicted its baroqueness.' For Gadda the baroque was not a style but a reality. In Creative Entanglements Robert Dombroski critically examines the nature of that reality. A profound understanding of the Baroque's critical heritage, in areas as diverse as aesthetics, epistemology, politics, and psychoanalysis, informs this groundbreaking study of Gadda's narrative form. Through sustained readings of such thinkers as Leibnitz, Walter Benjamin, Gilles Deleuze, and Fredric Jameson, Dombroski places Gadda - a consummate modernist who is often misunderstood or marginalized as a literary 'stylist' - in a far-reaching theoretical context. Robert Dombroski identifies Gadda's complex 'baroque' style as not merely an aesthetic conceit, but an expression of modern alienation and of loss, grief, and the need for solitude in the face of a fragmented reality. Gadda's baroque is a narrative representation of the human condition, one that encompasses a multiplicity of viewpoints and the labyrinthine nature of human knowledge.
'It is a pity that we have had to wait so long for an extensive and critically self-aware study of this major figure in European letters. Dombroski's book fills a lacuna, and he is to be complimented for taking on such a task and delivering brilliantly. Indeed, such a book is necessary for making Gadda the internationally known writer he deserves to be.'Professor Giuseppe F. Mazzotta, Charles C. and Dorathea S. Dilley Professor of Italian Language and Literature, Yale University
'I am extremely impressed with Dombroski's book and I particularly admire the rigour, the methodological orientation, and the overall cultural richness which inform the work. There is no doubt that his research represents one of the most insightful contributions to Gadda scholarship.'John Picchione, Department of Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics, York University