Marina Paino

The kasbah-city of Goliarda-Jean Gabin

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Keywords: Goliarda Sapienza, Jean Gabin, città casbah, fabulous realism, Catania.

Naturally devoted to the representation of closed spaces, Goliarda Sapienza’s writing confronts itself with the narration of the author hometown in the novel Io, Jean Gabin, started at the end of the s but published in 2010. In this novel, the kasbah district serves as the backdrop of the story of the autobiographical self and it is constantly transfigured on the basis of the different urban landscapes she has known thanks to the vision of Jean Gabin’s films. The realistic language, which would naturally seem to fit the description of a degraded and infamous context such as the catanian Civita of the first twenty years of the twentieth century, leaves room for the representation of a fabulous and magical city. This idea of the city is indebted to the fantasies of the young protagonist as well as to the suggestions of the films from the 1930s interpreted by the French actor, loved by child Goliarda because he guides her through the alleys and ravines of her kasbah-city.

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