Primo Levi was a chemist, a witness to the Holocaust, a great writer… but also a linguist. Anna Laura and Giulio Lepschy, George Jochnowitz and other scholars have written important pages on this subject. Levi can teach us several lessons about Italian linguistics. As an essayist and brilliant writer, he gives us one such lesson when, with his “‘casual’ libertinage” in L’altrui mestiere, (Other People’s Trades), he explicitly confronts questions of linguistic history and etymology. His major works include many passages where he offers, knowingly and sometimes programmatically, notable examples of stylistic forms, syntactical constructions, and lexical aspects of undeniable interest to those who study the Italian language, its history, and its dialects. In this workshop, we will examine some passages, both fiction and non-fiction, associated with particular linguistic questions. The analysis will obviously be carried out on the Italian text, but the respective English texts will also be considered.
NB: This workshop will be held primarily in Italian.
RSVP: email firstname.lastname@example.org by Wednesday, Oct. 17 (space is limited)
Fabrizio Franceschini is Professor of Italian Linguistics and History of the Italian Language at the University of Pisa, where he is Vice President of the Center for Jewish Studies (Centro Interdipartimentale di Studi Ebraici). He has published on Italian linguistics, the history of the Italian language, and Italian philology across all epochs of the Italian tradition. His research has focused on the language and historical aspects of Dante’s Commedia and the early commentary tradition surrounding the poem. His current research addresses the presence of Dante in Primo Levi’s works.
Originally published at italianstudies.nd.edu.