In Prague, the Week of the Italian Language in the World kicked off with a novel that is rooted in Abruzzo, a land rich in popular traditions. Donatella Di Pietrantonio presented her ‘L’arminuta’, the winner of last year’s Campiello Prize, at the Kavarna Retezova Literary Café in Prague, as part of the events promoted by the Italian Cultural Institute. The novel was translated into Czech by Marina Feltlová (“Navrátilka”, Argo 2018), who moderated the event.
The interest shown by the Czech press and public arises from the cross-fertilization between two far-removed lands but drawn closer together by their strongly popular culture. In highlighting her ambivalent relationship with her place of birth, the writer said: “Every time I start to write, I think: ‘this time I’m going to put very little Abruzzo into it’ but then it comes out almost on its own. Practically beyond my will, this land takes up a big space of its own and this tells me of the power of one’s roots and origins because, after all, it’s like with a tree: the roots are what keeps it standing, prop it up, but at the same time they limit and keep it still, which makes me believe that roots must absolutely never be betrayed.”