In this class we were divided into groups and assigned different aspects associated with the Italian writer, Italo Calvino in order to formulate his character sketch through a creative timeline. For example, groups were assigned beliefs, ideologies, etc and our group was given Calvino’s writing style.

Through this exercise, I learnt that-

  • Calvino’s initial influence was his father who was an agronomist and most of his work included transforming his experiences as a partisan in the Italian resistance into fiction.
  • Calvino began his writing career as a politically motivated realist because he had witnessed the WW2 period
  • His main writing style included- folklorist style (fable-like), Neo-realistic style, oedipus style (indefinite structure, eg: haikus)
  • Initially he wrote political alegoroies, historical novels, inspired by  scientific theories and then he moved on to writing narratives, love stories, elaborate satires, playful fantasy with crystalline structure, etc .
  • He codified his passion for beginnings and mistrust of endings and also his habit of moving from one obsession to the other through his novels.
  • Through his two books- Invisible cities and If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller– he showed his method of using fantasy to address reality.
Creative Timeline

Data source– ThoughtCo. (Patrick Kennedy); The Guardian (Chris Power), Wikipedia,etc

Critical Reflection-I believe that it was an extremely productive class because it is important to know enough about the writer of the book we are going to be reading, what he was thinking and experiencing while he wrote the novel, what were his beliefs, ideologies, what influenced his writing style, etc. Creating a timeline was a good way to learn since tables and flowcharts are easier to register and learn from.

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