For an Ethics of Lyric Discourse: A Reading of Leopardi's "La Ginestra"

Francesco Giusti

Abstract


The article focuses on Leopardi’s renowned poem La ginestra, o il fiore del deserto (1836) and on the scholars who have firstly explored the ‘political’ ideas proposed by this text: C. Luporini in his Leopardi progressivo and W. Binni in La nuova poetica leopardiana, both published in 1947. This particular field of the Leopardi scholarship – which originated in the postwar years – tries to bring the ideological ‘content’ of the text to the fore. After a quick look at Luporini’s and Binni’s readings, the inquiry focuses instead on the ‘form’ of the text, and more specifically on the practice of lyric discourse, in order to outline the general ethical dynamics which underlie the lyric use of language in La ginestra: the relationship between the “I” and the flower of the desert, the potential dialogism of the lyric voice, the context of production of the text, the posture assumed by the “I” and the historical position of the critics, the truth telling as an ethical act of individual and collective resistance to crisis. By looking at these dynamics, it is possible to reconsider the political ‘ideal’ proposed by the text – in particular the «social catena» («social chain») mentioned at line 149 – in the light of its discursive practices. The article, finally, emphasizes the similarities between this interpretative possibility and the philosophical interpretation proposed by Antonio Negri in his essay Lenta ginestra. Saggio sull’ontologia di Giacomo Leopardi (1987) in a cultural context very different from Binni and Luporini’s postwar Italy.  

  


Keywords


Lyric; Dialogism; Ethics; Politics; Practice; Resistance; Crisis; Act; History; Leopardi; Toni Negri; Binni; Luporini; Witness

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13125/2039-6597/1695

NBN: http://nbn.depositolegale.it/urn%3Anbn%3Ait%3Aunica-16947

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