A Place to Live

A Place to Live

And Other Selected Essays of Natalia Ginzburg

Book - 2002
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Random House, Inc.
Arguably one of Italy’s greatest contemporary writers, Natalia Ginzburg has been best known in America as a writer’s writer, quiet beloved of her fellow wordsmiths. This collection of personal essays chosen by the eminent American writer Lynne Sharon Schwartz from four of Ginzburg’s books written over the course of Ginzburg’s lifetime was a many-years long project for Schwartz. These essays are deeply felt, but also disarmingly accessible. Full of self-doubt and searing insight, Ginzburg is merciless in her attempts to describe herself and her world—and yet paradoxically, her self-deprecating remarks reveal her deeper confidence in her own eye and writing ability, as well as the weight and nuance of her exploration of the conflict between humane values and bureaucratic rigidity.

Baker & Taylor
Essays by the Italian author of The Things We Used to Say discuss her roles as a writer and a mother, her displacement during World War II, her struggles with deprivation in postwar Italy, her witness to an infant's confiscation from its adoptive parents, and her travel experiences.

Publisher: New York : Seven Stories Press, [2002]
Edition: Seven Stories Press first edition
Copyright Date: ©2002
ISBN: 9781583224748
Branch Call Number: 854 GINZB
Characteristics: 237 pages ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Schwartz, Lynne Sharon


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Aug 28, 2012

The essay "My Craft" is a great meditation on writing, and a few of the early essays are great reflections on youth and living in exile. However, either through this translator's choice of essays or a matter of fact, I got the impression that Ginzburg turned bitter with age--criticizing tourists and narrowing her focus to the annoyances of city life. And the insight that seemed so natural in her youth disappears, as she gropes desperately, in a sententious style, for an adage in some of the later essays. Still, those early essays were worth reading.


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