Autobiographical Poems

Un libro in lingua di Bufalini Francesca Turini Costa-Zalessow Natalia (EDT) Borrelli Joan E. (TRN) edito da Small Pr Distribution, 2009

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In her Rime (1627-28), Francesca Turini Bufalini included a series of sonnets under the subtitle "Principio dello stato dell' autrice."... These poems are unique for their truly autobiographical nature, openly declared as such by the author herself. None of the European women poets preceding her, or any of her contemporaries, recorded their lives with such precision. In these sonnets, Turini Bufalini gives us a detailed description of her life, from childhood to old age, along with the full spectrum of her emotions. She describes her birth followed by the death of her father and mother, her lonely, rustic but free life as an orphan in her uncle's castle in the wilderness of the Apennines (where she kept company with shepherdesses, rode horses and went hunting), her marriage, her exuberant joys of motherhood, her sad widowhood, love for her children and grandchildren, trouble with her adult sons and the tragic death of one of them. In most poems a strong, narrating "I" predominates, but frequently the author also addresses herself, her heart and her soul in the personal "you" voice.

With my introduction and notes, and my selection of what I consider to be Turini Bufalini's best poems, I point out the parallelism between events in her actual life and her poetic compositions. I examine her style, themes and quality as a poet who wrote on subjects not seen before in the works of other women poets. Where possible, I compare her verses to those of Italian poets preceding her. I also review and comment on the opinions of literary critics regarding her work...---Introduction

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