Analysis

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Last Updated on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 447

Giorgio Bassani weaves allusions into The Garden of the Finzi-Continis. The novel opens with an allusion to the now dead Etruscan civilization, once vibrant in Italy, and a parallel to the lost Jewish community. Against the sentiment that we don't feel sorrow over the loss of the Etruscans because it is as if they never lived, the Etruscan cemetery they visit bears mute testimony to the fact the Etruscans, like the Jews, did live. They went about the ordinary activities of life, using items such as spades, scissors, and knives still familiar to us.

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It is also worth noting that Micol is writing her thesis on Emily Dickinson, the famously reclusive American poet. While Micol feels the extension phone in her room keeps her in contact with the world, her choice of thesis topic points to her isolation and withdrawal from the larger society.

Anachronism also shows up in The Garden of the Finzi-Continis: One of the interesting aspects of reading a novel set in another time period is the way its time differs from our own. Items, world-views or customs that are anachronistic are those that are different from ours. For instance, for most people in our culture, traveling by buggy would be anachronistic. Anachronism also means misplacing items, ideas, and ways of behaving typical of our time period into another time period. For example, people living in 1900 would not have televisions because television had not yet been invented.

Anachronism occurs in The Garden of the Finzi-Continis in terms of world-view. The narrator's father in the novel, for example, is happy that by 1933 ninety percent of Ferrarra's Jews have joined the Fascist party and angry that Micol's father has not....

(The entire section contains 447 words.)

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