Paris: Romano Bilenchi
Conservatorio di Santa Teresa
On 10 May 2023, at 7.30 pm, the Italian Cultural Institute in Paris will host the presentation of Romano Bilenchi’s novel Conservatorio di Santa Teresa, for the first time translated into French in the ‘Cahiers de l’Hôtel de Galliffet’ series.
With the participation of the writer Michèle Lesbre, Christophe Mileschi (Université de Paris Nanterre), Marie-José Tramuta, translator of the novel, and Paolo Grossi (Cahiers de l’Hôtel de Galliffet).
Conservatorio di Santa Teresa is one of the key novels of 20th century Italian literature. First published in 1940, it only became more widely available in 1973, thanks to a new edition with a preface by Mario Luzi. Until now, it had never been translated into French. Between the Tuscan countryside and the city, in the climate of violent social clashes preceding and following the First World War, Conservatorio di Santa Teresa tells the story of Sergio’s sentimental upbringing: an itinerary of discovery of himself and the world around him, of nature, sex, friendship, between the end of childhood and the beginning of adolescence. In prose of rare poetic intensity, the author plumbs with penetrating lucidity the most intimate resonances of the conflict between the interiority of his characters and the crude reality of life.
“Bilenchi’s art consists in staging, with a truly terrifying obviousness and narrative logic, the absolute incompatibility of our desires with the order of the world” (Jean-Michel Gardair).