Love in Vain (Paperback)

Selected Stories

By Minna Proctor, Federigo Tozzi, Minna Proctor (Translated by)

New Directions, 9780811214711

Publication Date: May 17, 2001

List Price: 14.95*
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Description

Love in Vain: Selected Stories of Federigo Tozzi is the debut short-story collection in English of one of Italy's most distinguished early modern writers. The twenty stories of Love in Vain were selected and translated by Minna Proctor, who received the 1998 PEN/Renato Poggioli Award for her then unpublished renderings of Tozzi's fiction. "The investigation of naturalism, of truth," writes Proctor in her biographical introduction, "defined Tozzi's poetics. Impassioned by literature, yet isolated from the mainstream, Tozzi found nothing so fascinating as the unfettered expression of the inner lives of normal people." His work is at once a mixture of subtlety and melodrama, of psychological perception, primitive emotion, and raw physical need, as his plain subjects, yearning for connection and love, forever grasp at the unattainable.


About the Author

The author of Do You Hear What I Hear? Religious Calling, the Priesthood, and My Father, and the editor of The Literary Review, Minna Proctor won the PEN/Renato Poggioli Award for her translation of Federigo Tozzi’s Love in Vain.

The author of Do You Hear What I Hear? Religious Calling, the Priesthood, and My Father, and the editor of The Literary Review, Minna Proctor won the PEN/Renato Poggioli Award for her translation of Federigo Tozzi’s Love in Vain.


Praise For Love in Vain: Selected Stories

Federigo Tozzi, Italy's forgotten master of the short story, is a real discovery. I was delighted by the compassion and insight of Love in Vain, by its unflinching and subtle dissection of humankind's most private moments. How can such a powerful writer have slipped through the net and for so long? Now, thanks to Minna Proctor's elegant and equally subtle translations, it is unlikely that Tozzi will be forgotten again.

— Jim Crace, author of "Being Dead"

Federigo Tozzi's beautiful, strange love stories hover at the abyss, where reason meets unreason and loses. Tozzi must be the poet of abjection, a poet of the unconscious. His perplexing tales reflect on self-conscious characters caught in love's, and their own, absurdly needy net. They comment, too, on the moment when ideas were changing, sensibilities shifting, and his characters move, resistant and confused, from the Victorian into the modern. Translator Minna Proctor has done a wonderful job of realizing these startling stories in English and bringing them to us for the first time.
— Lynne Tillman, author of "No Lease on Life"

Ardent, impetuous, crackling with nerve-energies, Federigo Tozzi insists on his uniqueness. Minna Proctor has brought this full-throttle sensibility into English without a flinch or a fidget.
— Sven Birkerts, author of "Readings"