Volume 46, Issue 2
  • ISSN 0035-3906
  • E-ISSN: 1600-0811
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The first chapters of Carlo Collodi’s Pinocchio were printed in 1881, the same year as the publication of the novel I Malavoglia, Giovanni Verga’s masterpiece of verismo. While every critical reader of Verga’s realism has pointed out his particular narrative interpretation of evolution, Collodi’s has novel very seldom been connected to the theories of evolution, even if Darwin’s ideas were highly present in the public debate in Florence during the last decades of the 19th century. The reasons for this silence are primarily to be found in the genre of Pinocchio, in the fact that it is children literature, and therefore primarily related to the narrative mechanisms of the fairy tales and pedagogical literature. Focusing on Pinocchio, the article discusses to which degree Darwinism can be traced in Collodi’s literature for children, and questions if the continuous metamorphoses of Pinocchio can be read also in connection with the naturalist conception of the literary characters as unstable, in continuous evolution, and not only as part of the mechanisms of fairy tales and mythological narratives.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Darwin; evolution; Pinocchio; posthumanism
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