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Thursday, June 20, 2024
(Sources of information for Italian Canadian writers in Windsor are: Association of Italian Canadian Writers and Guernica Editions)

The phenomenon of Italian-Canadian writers never ceases to amaze the readers who have only recently discovered it. These ethnic writers are producing a literature that emerges directly from the creative instinct to capture feelings, memories and difficult migration experiences on paper.

Italian-Canadian writing existed long before there were subsidies from arts councils… While a good deal of early writing among aspiring immigrant authors was found primarily in ethnic papers such as Lo Stendardo (1898), La Tribuna Canadese, II Bolletino Italo-Canadese, or L 'Emigrante, it was never limited to these outlets. In Montreal Liborio Lattoni was publishing Italian poems in the 1920s and 1930s, followed by the French plays of Mario Duliani whose 1945 novel, Ville Sans Femmes appeared in Italian a year later. In Toronto an early writer was Francesco Gualtieri who wrote a brief ethnic history entitled We Italians: A Study of Italian Immigration in Canada (1928), and some collections of poems in English: Songs of Solitude (1920), The Swing of the Soul (1923), Harbors (1924), The Sonnets of Triumph (1925). With the exception of Duliani's novel, little writing seems to have survived from the 1940s.

With the increase in Italian immigration in the 1950s the potential for new readers also grew… Across Canada Italian-Canadian writers began to flourish. (Joseph Pivato, Ph.D. Athabasca University, The Work of Italian-Canadian Writers. Il Congresso, Anno 3 Numero 6 Guigno 1986)

There are more than 120 writers of Italian descent in Canada. Most of them publish in English, but a number use Italian or French, and a few use one of the other Italian languages such as Friulian (the most widely spoken of the Rhaeto-Romance languages, within the Romance language family (Indo-European)).

Windsor itself has produced its own Italian Canadian writers, including:

Carlinda D'Alimonte
Filomena Merucci
Len Gasparini
Lisa Gabriele
Maria Agnese Letizia in D’Agnillo
Marisa De Franceschi
Nino Ricci
Salvatore Ala

The opinions and interpretations in this publication are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Government of Canada.


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