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In Search of Elena Ferrante

The Novels and the Question of Authorship

by Karen Bojar


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Elena Ferrante—named one of the 100 most influential people in 2016 by Time magazine—is best known for her Neapolitan novels, which explore such themes as the complexity of female friendship; the joys and constraints of motherhood; the impact of changing gender roles; the pervasiveness of male violence; the struggle for upward mobility; and the impact of the feminist movement. Ferrante's three novellas encompass similar themes, focusing on moments of extreme tension in women's lives. This study analyzes the integration of political themes and feminist theory in Ferrante's works, including men's entrapment in a sexist script written for them from time immemorial. Her decision to write under a pseudonym is examined, along with speculation that Rome-based translator Anita Raja and her husband Domenico Starnone are coauthors of Ferrante's books.

Publication Details

McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers
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Karen Bojar (Author)

Karen Bojar is a professor emerita of English and women's studies at the Community College of Philadelphia where she founded the women's studies/gender studies program. She has written numerous books and articles on feminist literature and grassro...

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In Search of Elena Ferrante
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