Italo Svevo Essay - Italo Svevo Long Fiction Analysis

Aron Hector Schmitz

Italo Svevo Long Fiction Analysis

The twenty-five-year hiatus between the writing of Italo Svevo’s first novels and his third, Confessions of Zeno, which is probably his best and certainly his most innovative work, makes it risky to generalize about his themes and techniques. In Confessions of Zeno, he achieves a dimension of comedy that is unique in modern literature, a comedy akin to Shakespeare’s in the inclusiveness of its sympathy and vision. This comedy is possible because Svevo allows the novel to expand to the limits of his own consciousness. Critic Naomi Lebowitz has listed three “zones” in which the Svevian consciousness moves: the bourgeois order represented by daily family life and business transactions, a zone guided by...

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