Italy Literature Part 1
According to MYSTERYAROUND.COM, the solutions and responses of the last fifteen years represent the maturation of the discussions and problems that had been raised and developed in the second half of the 1950s starting from the observation of the crisis and failure of neorealism. In particular, that need for contact with reality persisted, that need for knowledge that had manifested itself after the war and to which neorealism had given an answer, rather than inadequate, wrong. The intolerance for the rhetorical code of neorealism had given rise to a situation of search for operational outlets which took the form of a prevalent polemic activity which did not correspond to an adequate planning capacity. The proposed solutions in fact moved either from a pure and simple recovery of already used and worn modules,
In this research and analysis work, literary journals played a decisive role both as a testing ground, as a forum for debate and clarification of already acquired data, and as an open experimentation workshop on heterogeneous materials.
In the second half of the 1950s, we thus witness an attempt to reorganize the literary proposal linked to the twentieth-century cultured tradition with the Neo-Hermeticism of the Chimera (1954-55) and a revival of Neorealist poetics, through the eclecticism of La Situazione (1955-1961).) and, through a process of clarification and theoretical definition of the concept of realism, with Il Contemporaneo (1954-57; 1958-64). A precise identification of neorealism as an analogous rhetorical code, albeit with an inverted sign compared to that of the Fascist period, nevertheless moves the most decisive action of Officina(1955-58; 1959) who, defining the character of his own action in terms of neo-experimentalism, indicated the most correct solution to the problem in the way of research, given the impossibility of accepting the pre-established formulas linked to the dogmatic certainties of an ideological vision of world. But, if in this sense Officina was able to effectively offer a meeting point and an active comparison with different and heterogeneous experiences, it did not manage to overcome the phase of juxtaposition of trends, that is, to carry out a work of organization of culture through elaboration of a positive project starting from the census and the recording of the most diverse contributions. Ultimately the incompleteness of the Officina experience was the result of the lack of recognition of the linguistic nature of the literary operation and therefore of the level to which the elaboration of the concept of realism was referred.
Instead, Nuova Corrente (founded in 1954) arrives at this perspective as the result of a research oriented from the beginning towards the recovery of the object. In fact, the reference to E. Pound’s lesson that the magazine was able to give well in advance, since 1956, appears to be of fundamental importance, and the ability to use, in flexible and articulated forms, the possibilities offered by integration into the “aesthetic” discourse of the acquisitions derived from a vast range of methods and their fields of application. Around Il Verri’s predominantly phenomenological choice(1956), meanwhile, one of the most representative tendencies of the neo-avant-garde aimed at recovering the real as an object of the linguistic process, and engaged in an action of reconstruction consisting in identifying the structural nature of the “chaos” which, as already in TW Adorno, art in today’s world has the task of introducing order.
The sixties are therefore characterized by the continuation of a research already vigorously started in the previous five years but which is gradually being clarified in its own reasons, while replacing a strong push to achieve the prevailing polemical intentions of the first phase. The structural nature of the changed situation of art in the country and, consequently, the urgency to grasp and analyze the analogies with the parallel processes in the Western world is now coming to light, and problematically penetrates into the conscience. From the observation of the change in the Italian economic structure from agricultural to industrial, albeit in the persistence of deep-rooted imbalances between areas, the awareness of the changes that the phenomenon introduced also at the level of communication arose.
In this context, Il Menabò (1959-1967) plays a central role of proposal and stimulus. The distinction between an assumption of the industrial world as an object, theme, content and an operation of linguistic adaptation to the new reality produced by the neo-capitalist society, was in fact already at the basis of the number dedicated by Menabò (1961, fasc. 4) to the theme of relations between literature and industry. Likewise, always Il Menabò, indicated in the alienation the fundamental datum of the human condition in industrial society, perceivable and representable, also in this case, not as a new content but, at the linguistic level, as a block of communication, as an “aphasia of incommunicability”. The discussion on language had more vivid tones, which began with an intervention by Vittorini who turned against the claim of reducing the intervention of the literary fact to a pure mimetic operation of recording the spoken language, in the variants of simple everyday speech or dialect and jargon, specifying that only in the articulation of the discourse into figures does the specific operation of artistic expression and the possibility of guaranteeing its communicative function consist. The Menabòhe also attempted a first historical arrangement of the language-dialect problem in the literature of Italy of the twentieth century, identifying in the use of the dialect during the twenty years an implicit charge of demystification destined to be reduced with the neorealism, when the use of the dialectal mixture had actually come to coincide with a sort of southern regionalism. The rupture of this exclusive relationship between the use of the dialect and the southern question, on the other hand, began to take place at a stage still in gestation.