basque

Basque literature in focus

It is always interesting to investigate the links between the supported political independence and the cultural identity of a region: in the case of the Basque country, culture is a big part of what serves the cause for independence on many fronts. First and foremost, the Basque country has a language of its own: the unified Basque language…

italiano

The Italian language vs. foreign influences: history, tradition and… issues

The choice of the Italian Fascist government to impose the Italian language over any other foreign influence in the 1930s had more than one reason: it was aimed at stopping the power of other European states such as France, Germany or Britain, from somewhat conquering Italy with the charm of their own languages, but also…

Canada

On Canadian literature and its survival complex

When Canadian author Margaret Atwood first published her study “Survival: A Thematic Guide to Canadian Literature” in 1972, it drew a lot of attention. A research aimed at a non-academic audience, it highlighted a few basic elements in Canadian literature, also posing the question on the identity or (supposedly) the existence of a Canadian literature.…

latin

Can’t repeat the past: on the Latin language and its unlikely revival

When you start learning a new language you picture yourself understanding that language, you learn how to interact with it and without a doubt you project yourself into a future where this new language gives access to new and exciting possibilities. But Latin looks backwards. And any learner of Latin is forced to look at…

contemporaryrussian

Beyond yesterday’s perspective: Russia and contemporary literature

I hear that “The Master and Margarita” is a brilliant novel, that Dostoyevsky’s works are widely appreciated in Universities and that Tolstoy’s “Anna Karenina” is an all-time classic of Russian literature. All true. Then, how come new authors from Russia are barely mentioned in the English language? There is a contemporary literature in Russia. One…