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Orality and written culture in Italian migrant literature: the work of Yousif Jaralla

Ramadhani Mussa, Kombola T. 2020. Orality and written culture in Italian migrant literature: the work of Yousif Jaralla. Italian Studies 75 (3) , pp. 365-378. 10.1080/00751634.2020.1775399
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This article provides a novel account of the nature and significance of ‘orality’ in the writings of Italian ‘migrant writers’. It includes an in-depth analysis of ‘I fiumi d’altrove’, a text and performance by the Iraqi-born storyteller Yousif Jaralla, whose work has so far received scant critical attention. My aim is to investigate the role of orality as an integral part of migrant authors’ work within, and as part of, the broader Italian cultural panorama. From a theoretical viewpoint the discussion takes as its starting point the idea of an oral-literary continuum in order to challenge the perception of orality as an inferior and unsophisticated form of storytelling. I challenge this perception by revealing the literary sophistication of Jaralla’s tale ‘I fiumi d’altrove’ through an analysis of the formal patterns it exhibits. Thus, I propose a new formal and aesthetic approach to texts by migrant writers based on the explicit foregrounding of orality.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Modern Languages
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PB Modern European Languages
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 0075-1634
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 22 May 2020
Date of Acceptance: 29 April 2020
Last Modified: 28 Nov 2020 15:04

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