Manzoni’s I promessi sposi (The Betrothed), published in 1821, has acquired almost biblical status in Italy. Required reading in school, to the despair of many students, and copiously annotated by some of the country’s great philologists and literary scholars, the novel has acquired a thick crust of erudition and reverence that obscures its best qualities. Manzoni states it quite simply in his introduction, “It was as a story, although the reader might disagree, that I found beautiful, quite beautiful.”
In his talk, Michael F. Moore will discuss how his new translation of The Betrothed into modern American English restores the popular appeal of the novel. Using illustrations from the original 1840-42 edition and excerpts from his own translation, he will highlight how Manzoni’s constant interjections, hybrid style, and compelling storytelling make him a thoroughly modern writer.
This event is organized in collaboration with the network of Italian Cultural Institutes of North America, with a contribution of the Leonardo da Vinci Society San Francisco.