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Golini, Toward a Structural Analysis (abstract)

  • Vera Golini. "Toward a Structural Analysis of 'Parole in Liberta,' Published in 'Lacerba' and 'Poesia.'" Canadian Journal of Italian Studies 4 (1981): 277ñ98.
GOLINI'S MAIN GOAL here is not to provide an overview of Futurist typography and literary experiment, but to examine closely the moments when Italian Futurist poems break traditional form, syntax, and logic. She sorts these moments into what she calls "word patterns" and "codes" (280). She defines ten of these "codes," and argues they are spontaneous on the part of the authors, for they have never been explicitly defined in the context of a Futurist manifesto or any other type of Futurist writing. The results of these patterns are in conflict with Futurist ideals, which posits a constant flux of form and a consciously undisciplined approach toward the creation of poetry. Within the definition of a code, Golini pinpoints three main attributes: definition, function, and frequency. For example, the device of onomatopoeic display has, as its definition, its form on the page (horizontal or vertical, dark print); as its function, its literary effect (a word as a sound, the effect of concreteness upon an abstraction, intonation of Italian speech patterns); and, as its frequency, how often it appears (quite oftenóthis is Marinetti's favorite device.) She examines other patterns, such as "Deliberate Symmetry," "Mathematical Symbols," "Word Lists," etc. Also included are a number of typographical examples from Lacerba and Poesia. Golini closes the article by stating that poetry which incorporates visual participation is as old as civilization, and that the Futurists' claims that they were creating poetry anew, with no historical antecedent, were entirely false. She ends the article by stating, "though the Futurists believed themselves to be exercising in practice total freedom of creativity, in theory they were greatly fettered by their own prediliction for laying down rules, to wit, the staggering number of Futurist manifestos" (289). (Rebecca Scherr.)



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Michael Hancher

Department of English, University of Minnesota

URL: <http://umn.edu/home/mh/txtimrs3.html>

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Created 26 December 1997

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