Volume 17, Issue 1
  • ISSN 1932-2798
  • E-ISSN: 1876-2700
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In their migration, people carry objects with them, and relocate them through physical spaces and across cultural boundaries. Handed down through generations, these objects become signs of ethnicity beyond their appearance and purpose. Examining the variety of the literary representations of objects and their subsequent translation contributes to the analysis of how material culture migrates within distant cultural systems and from one language to another. This essay focuses on domestic objects depicted by two Italian authors writing about the experience of a migrant coming-of-age in the United States: Helen Barolini and Chiara Barzini. Using diverse multilingual and (self-)translation strategies, they highlight through cultural translation the difficulties of bridging their Italian and American selfhood within an Italian household relocated abroad. In doing so, their relationship with objects underlines how their diasporic experience is entangled with their achievement of self-confidence and independence as women within the context of the Italian diaspora.


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