Allied Encounters

Allied Encounters

The Gendered Redemption of World War II Italy

Honorable Mention for the 2019 American Association for Italian American Book Prize (20-21st Centuries)

Allied Encounters uniquely explores Anglo-American and Italian literary, cinematic, and military representations of World War II Italy in order to trace, critique, and move beyond the gendered paradigm of redemption that has conditioned understandings of the Allied–Italian encounter.

The arrival of the Allies’ global forces in an Italy torn by civil war brought together populations that had long mythologized one another, yet “liberation” did not prove to be the happy ending touted by official rhetoric. Instead of a “honeymoon,” the Allied–Italian encounter in cities such as Naples and Rome appeared to be a lurid affair, where the black market reigned supreme and prostitution was the norm.

Informed by the historical context as well as by their respective traditions, these texts become more than mirrors of the encounter or generic allegories. Instead, they are sites in which to explore repressed traumas that inform how the occupation unfolded and is remembered, including the Holocaust, the American Civil War, and European colonialism, as well as individual traumatic events like the massacre of the Fosse Ardeatine and the mass civilian rape near Rome by colonial soldiers

  • Cover
  • Allied Encounters
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • Dedication
  • Contents
  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • 1 Redeeming Destination Italy: A Guide to the Occupation of Enemy Territory
  • 2 “Liberated” Rome beyond Redemption: Roberto Rossellini’s Paisà and Alfred Hayes’s All Thy Conquests and The Girl on the Via Flaminia
  • 3 Happily Ever after Redemption: Luciana Peverelli’s “True” Romance Novels of Occupied Rome
  • 4 A Queer Redemption: John Horne Burns’s The Gallery
  • 5 Sleights of Hand, Black Skin, and the Redemption of Curzio Malaparte’s La pelle
  • 6 The Redemption of Saint Paul: Norman Lewis’s Naples ’44
  • Epilogue
  • Acknowledgments
  • Notes
  • Works Cited
  • Index


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