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Anna Maria Ortese


Anna Maria Ortese was born in Rome in 1914, one of seven children, but her family moved down south when she was young and she spent most of her early life in Naples. (Her short stories Il mare non bagna Napoli (The Bay is not Naples), which are portraits of Neapolitans are well worth reading.) Her formal education ended at age thirteen but she was a voracious reader as a child, enjoying, in particular, English novels in translation. Her early efforts at writing were encouraged by Massimo Bontempelli, who helped her to publish her first collection of stories, Angelici dolori. Since that time she has written a variety of novels and short stories as well as much journalism. What makes her writing so special is that it often seems so realistic, like the journalism she practised while, at the same time, using fantasy, allegory and even the grotesque to tell her story. She spent the last twenty years of life in Rapallo, near Genoa, where she died in 1998.


Anna Maria Ortese
Ortese, Anna Maria (1914-1998)
Where Time is Other (article by Ortese)
Anna Maria Ortese (in Italian)
Anna Maria Ortese (in Italian)
Anna Maria Ortese (1914-1998) (in Italian)
Anna Maria Ortese e Napoli, la sua patria di adozione (in Italian)


1937 Angelici dolori (stories)
1950 L’infanta sepolta (stories)
1953 Il mare non bagna Napoli (The Bay is not Naples) (stories)
1958 I giorni del cielo (stories)
1958 Silenzio a Milano (articles)
1965 L’iguana (The Iguana) (novel)
1967 Poveri e semplici (novel)
1968 La luna sul muro e altri racconti (stories)
1969 L’alone grigio (stories)
1975 Il porto di Toledo (novel)
1979 Il cappello piumato (novel)
1983 Il treno russo (articles)
1986 Il Mormorio di Parigi (articles)
1987 Estivi terrori (stories)
1987 In sonno e in veglia (stories)
1987 La morte del Folletto (stories)
1991 La lente scura: scritti di viaggio (travel)
1993 Il cardillo addolorato (The Lament of the Linnet) (novel)
1994 A Music behind the Wall: Selected Stories
1994 Le giacchette grigie della Nunziatella (story)
1996 Alonso e i visionari (novel)
1996 Il mio paese è la notte (poetry)
1997 Corpo celeste (articles/interviews)
1998 La luna che trascorre (poetry)
1998 Il porto di Toledo (novel)
2001 Il monaciello di Napoli – Il fantasma (stories)
2006 L’archivio di Anna Maria Ortese
2006 Alla luce del Sud: lettere a Pasquale Prunas
2008 Il vento passa (story)
2010 Mistero doloroso (story)
2011 Da Moby Dick all’Orsa Bianca: scritti sulla letteratura e sull’arte (criticism)
2011 Bellezza, addio: lettere a Dario Bellezza, 1972-1992 (letters)
2014 Nessun male può dirsi
2016 Le Piccole Persone
2018 Neapolitan Chronicles (US); Evening Descends Upon the Hills (UK) (stories)