An Annotated Bibliography of Italian
Non-Fiction and Autobiographies
Page 23: from Arrighi to Lentricchia
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- Arrighi, Antonio A. The Story of Antonio, the Galley Slave.
New York: F. H. Revell Co., 1911.
- [One of the earliest immigrant narratives in which an Italian
political exile, from the failed 1848-49 revolution in Italy, struggles to make a new life
- Barolini, Helen. Festa: Recipes and Recollections. New York:
- [A combination of life and the pursuit of good food, this
collection of recipes and memories give substance and credence to her phrase
"Mangiando, Ricordo," "by eating I remember."]
- Barolini, Helen. Ed. Chiaroscuro: Essays on Italian-american
Culture. W. Lafayette, IN: Bordighera. 1996.
- [These personal and critical essays offer a multi-layered
account of the rediscovery of identity of one of Italian Americas leading writers.]
- Bernardi, Adria. Houses with Names. Urbana, IL: University of
Illinois Press, 1990.
- [A series of personal essays based on northern Italian
immigrant oral histories and the imaginative recollections of a young Italian-American
- Buscaglia, Leo. Papa, My Father. New York: Fawcett Columbine,
- [Recollections of an immigrant fathers life by a son who
has made his career as an inspirational speaker]
- Canzoneri, Robert. A Highly Ramified Tree. New York: The
Viking Press, 1976.
- [A collection of sketches covering the authors
experiences growing up in Mississippi and features portraits of his Sicilian relatives in
the U.S. and Sicily.]
- ---. I Do So Politely: a Voice from the South. Boston:
Houghton Mifflin Company, 1965.
- [This analysis of Italian life in Mississippi is a cross
between sociological reporting and fiction.]
- Cateura, Linda Brandi. Growing up Italian. New York: William
- [How being brought up as an Italian American helped shape the
characters, lives and fortunes of twenty-four celebrated Americans including interviews
with Mario Cuomo, Eleanor Cutri Smeal, Gay Talese, Tony Bennett, Joseph Cardinal Bernadin,
Yogi Berra, John Ciardi, Frank Stella, Daniella Gioseffi and others.]
- Corsi, Edward. In the Shadow of Liberty. New York: Macmillan,
- [An immigrant recounts his experiences of becoming an
- Covello, Leonard and D'Agostino, Guido. The Heart Is the Teacher.
New York: McGraw Hill, 1958.
- [Covellos life story, assisted by novelist
DAgostino, recounts his experience as an immigrant child who become a leader in New
York and national education.]
- Cuomo, Mario M. Diaries of Mario M. Cuomo. New York: Random
- [Written in the tradition of Italian intellectual
autobiographies, Cuomos Diaries, are proof that his eloquence and compassion were
earned through his experience as an Italian American.]
- DAngelo, Pascal. Son of Italy. New York: Macmillan,
- [D'Angelo's story of his rise from illiterate pick and shovel
immigrant to a "hunger artist" citizen of literary America (through his winning
of a national poetry contest) can be read as a version of the American success story
modeled after Benjamin Franklin's Autobiography.]
- DAlessandro, Edward A. The Ginney Block: Reminiscences of an
Italian-american Dead-end Street Kid. Baltimore, MD: Gateway Press, 1988.
- [A collection of vignettes of 1930s life in an early Italian
community in Cleveland, Ohio.]
- Di Prima, Diane. Memoirs of a Beatnik. 1969. San Francisco:
Last Gasp Press, 1988.
- [The first, major autobiography by an Italian-American woman
Memoirs covers the early adulthood of this poet who was one of the only women identified
with the infamous "Beat" movement.]
- ---. Recollections of My Life as a Woman. New York: Viking,
- [di Prima goes back to the troubled times before she left home
(when Memoirs begins) and uncovers the family secrets that haunted her into the early
years of her adulthood.]
- Ets, Marie Hall. Rosa: the Life of an Italian Immigrant.
Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1970.
- [Narrated to Marie Hall Ets, a social worker at a Chicago
settlement house for poor immigrants, Rosa documents a young girl's life in an
impoverished northern Italian village, and her forced immigration to America to join her
husband (through a marriage arranged by her stepmother who would not allow Rosa to marry a
man to whom Rosa had declared her love).]
- Gambino, Richard. Blood of My Blood: the Dilemma of the
Italian-Americans. New York: Doubleday, 1974.
- [Gambino illustrates his pioneer study of Italian-American
culture with anecdotes from his life in Brooklyn.]
- Harrison, Barbara Grizzuti. Off Center: Essays. New York: The
Dial Press, 1980.
- [A collection of personal and critical essays on a variety of
subjects including her Brooklyn upbringing.]
- ---. The Astonishing World. New York: Ticknor and Fields,
- [Her essays cover a variety of subjects including the Italian
American family, Bensonhurst, and Italy.]
- ---. Italian Days. New York: Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1990.
- [An account of the authors travels through Italy.]
- Higdon, Rose Musacchio and Higdon, Hal . Falconara: a Family
Odyssey. Michigan City, IN: Roadrunner Press, 1993.
- [The story of a family odyssey from Italy to America told by a
husband and wife team who travels back in search of roots.]
- Lentricchia, Frank. The Edge of Night. New York, Random House,
- [Lentricchia's imaginative autobiography focuses on a period
covering a little over a year of his life, refuses to speak for an entire culture and
concentrates on his own personal struggle to form an identity composed of a working class
childhood and a middle-class adulthood.]
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