Current Students

Valentina Varinelli

My project consists in a literary and linguistic analysis and a new edition of Percy Bysshe Shelley’s writings in Italian, both originals and self-translations. These writings have been largely overlooked on the assumption that they were written for, or as a result of Shelley’s infatuation with, Teresa ‘Emilia’ Viviani, the dedicatee of Epipsychidion. This reductive reading accounts neither for the complexity of Shelley’s works in Italian and their interrelationships with his works in English, nor for the unusualness of a poet translating himself into a foreign language. The general neglect that Shelley’s writings in Italian have met with is reflected in the poor quality of available editions of them. My edition, based on a fresh examination of all the extant manuscripts, is the foundation of my reassessment of this corpus. Drawing on textual evidence my thesis addresses the following questions: how proficient was Shelley in written Italian? What was his approach when translating himself? Why did he translate a variety of his works into Italian? What prompted him to compose original poetry and prose in that language? Were these writings meant for publication and/or private circulation? If so, who was his intended audience? What is their place in Shelley’s canon?

Supervisory Team: Prof. Michael Rossington, English Literature, Language and Linguistics (Newcastle), Dr Laura Kirkley, English Literature, Language and Linguistics (Newcastle), Dr Francis Jones, Modern Languages (Newcastle).

Start Date: 25 September 2017.