It’s not a school and it’s not Italian literature.

A found manuscript is a very effective source when starting a narrative, and can also be useful in creating a collection of poems.Italian School By Josep Pedrales (Barcelona, ​​1979) It is neither school nor Italian, but this is how a collection of three works is presented, to which, if we accept the account of the introduction, signed by Luca M. Rota, we will have to read the original translations of the solos in Italian. But these originals do not exist and we are told little about them, rather they belong to “an ancient tradition, a kind of playful and crazy literature”. A game similar to that of the chivalric novels whose authors used to present them as a translation of an ancient manuscript of distant origin that had been miraculously recovered. This collection was published in 2003 and is now being re-edited with the addition of an epilogue full of digressions by the current Joan Tudó, who, to his merits as a commentator, we must add, if we want to pay attention to what he says, the fact of sharing an apartment with the author Pedrales. In general, it has become a parody of versions of literary texts, not as brilliant as the original pale fire Nabokov, and exercises in literary criticism, such as Pierre Menard de Borges, authors collected by Tudou.

First, there is a series of eighteen sonnets of heptamerican verses of uncertain attribution, more or less inspired by the figure of St. John the Baptist, although thanks to the strange tone of the story in general, it makes you think more of Simon Stiletta from Buñuel’s film. Then we find “Espines de rifinaments literaris”, a prose collection of anecdotes, quotations and reflections on an unnamed “master”, author of a prolific work in various genres, which includes fragments of literary principles. It is easy to think that they constitute a fictional self-portrait that Pedralez drew for himself, and that they are also a tailor’s drawer: “The master believed for a long time that he was full of madness, but it only manifested itself through writing.” Finally, “Escrit a la pell ambangrena”, a long poem, 333 lines, almost all of them in stanzas. It is the first-person account of a person who abandons suicide and begins to write all night. He presents us with what he writes and tells us what he does or what happens while he writes.

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In short, the three texts, as well as the vengeful conclusion of this year’s edition, point to a bet on genres or an aspect of literature that has not been refined recently. Playfulness and parody, wit and verbal play, from Pitarra’s astracanada style to Olipo’s experimental style, a little bit of everything. Todó was right when he pointed out that Pedral’s proposal is not about roughness, that “against what the clichés want, we serve well, but the fact of aligning it with the formal approaches included”, that is, making an authentic poetry, putting all its rhetorical resources at the service of projects that contain a lot of parody, fantasy and great ironic spirit. It is not worth discussing whether the place that these productions occupy in the whole of literature is more or less important or recognized because they do not replace others that are more ambitious, more complex or higher in the spiritual sense, but they do enough. to achieve the mission of entertainment through virtuous language.

Italian School

Joseph Pedralz
Editions 62
136 pages. €12.90. @ €6.99

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