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The Autobiography of Emanuel Carnevali: Part 3

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Item Type: Sound Recording Duration: 44 min
Event Type: Spoken Word  

Kay Boyle introduces a series of readings taken from the autobiography of the Italian American poet Emanuel Carnevali. Born to a morphine addicted mother and abusive father, Carnevali wrote poetry that spoke to the disillusionment he felt as an immigrant in America. He never seemed to hold down a job for very long and had a number of disastrous love affairs. Although well respected by such poets as William Carlos Williams, Ezra Pound, and Carl Sandburg, Carnevali was never financially successful. In 1922 he was stuck down with encephalitis lethargica, an illness that causes the victim to shake and to convulse uncontrollably and continuously, until death intervenes. He soon returned home to Italy as an impoverished and disabled man where he died in 1942. These essays provide a telling account of his journey to the United States and the troubles he had as a young immigrant in New York City finding and keeping a job and his continual struggle for survival And yet, as with his poetry, the beauty of his words often belay the painful subject matter that they relate.

Musical Selections:  The Great Jump-Italy, U. S. A. (7:55) -- Black-New York (8:16) -- The Job (4:51) -- My Brother (15:49)
Performers:  Ian Franckenstein, reader
Genres:  Literature; Poetry
Subject:  Carnevali, Emanuel; Authors, American -- 20th century -- Biography; Italian Americans -- Biography
People:  Boyle, Kay, 1902-1992 ; Carnevali, Emanuel; Franckenstein, Ian
First Broadcast Date:  9/17/1975
 
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