Who is Elena Ferrante? (* see at the end of this page the last update to this post.)
She is an Italian writer who writes under pseudonym. She is particularly well known and appreciated in the United States and Canada.
Two movies, Troubling Love, by Mario Martone, and The Days of Abandonment, by Roberto Faenza come from two of her novels.
In La Frantumaglia, a collection of letters and interviews, she explains the reasons for her anonymity.
In 2015, with The Story of the Lost Child, she entered the quintet of the Strega Prize (the most prestigious Italian literary award), the five titles finalists, and took the third place. The Story of the Lost Child is the fourth and last volume by her last book, My Brilliant Friend.
Since you can not know more about her unless reading her books, here following you find an excerpt by The Story of the Lost Child.
I remember that on Christmas evening I was in a corner with the baby and looking serenely at the young bodies of my daughters, charged with energy. They all resembled me and none of them did, their lives were very far from mine and yet I felt them as inseparable parts of me. I thought: how much work I’ve done and what a long road I’ve traveled. At every step I could have given in and yet I didn’t. I left the neighborhood, I returned, I managed to leave again. Nothing, nothing pulled me down, along with these girls I produced. We’re safe, I brought them all to safety. Oh, they now belong to other places and other languages. They consider Italy a splendid corner of the planet and, at the same time, an insignificant and ineffectual province, habitable only for a short vacation. Dede often says to me: Leave, come and stay in my house, you can do your work from there. I say yes, sooner or later I will. They’re proud of me and yet I know that none of them would tolerate me for long, not even Imma by now. The world has changed tremendously and belongs more and more to them, less and less to me. But that’s all right—I said to myself, caressing Hamid—in the end what counts is these very smart girls who haven’t encountered a single one of the difficulties I faced. They have habits, voices, requirements, entitlements, self-awareness that even today I wouldn’t dare allow myself. Others haven’t had the same luck. In the wealthier countries a mediocrity that hides the horrors of the rest of the world has prevailed. When those horrors release a violence that reaches into our cities and our habits we’re startled, we’re alarmed. Last year I was dying of fear and I made long phone calls to Dede, to Elsa, even to Pietro, when I saw on television the planes that set the towers in New York ablaze the way you light a match by gently striking the head. In the world below is the inferno. My daughters know it but only through words, and they become indignant, all the time enjoying the pleasures of existence, while it lasts. They attribute their well-being and their success to their father. But I—I who did not have privileges—am the foundation of their privileges.
(My Brilliant Friend, Volume IV, The Story of the Lost Child, OLD AGE, The Story of bad blood).
Who is Elena Ferrante?
THESE WORDS ARE ADDED LATER ON MAY THE FIRST 2017.
After many years in which Elena Ferrante kept unknown, on October 2nd 2016, the journalist Claudio Gatti pubblished an article on Il Sole24Ore revealing the Elena Ferrante real identity. You can see this article here in Italian or another one in english about the same topic here from the New York Reviwe of Books.
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