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Interesting and information-filled look at the Naples Elena Ferrante describes.
I am grateful to Ms. Oteri for providing us a rich and textured visit through Ferrante's Naples. She was clearly in charge of her material and her enthusiasm came through in a delightful way. i will look for other tours or conversations with her.
This session was an interesting romp through Naples using the character development of the girlhood friends, Elena and Lila. Ms. Oteri really demonstrated how the city is also a character in these 4 novels. Her presentation clarified some questions that I had while reading the first novel. The tours of the various sections of Naples helped in understanding the living conditions, the history which impacted the people (WW II) there, and the social climate in the '50s. Ms. Oteri does admit that her discussion might be a spoiler alert if one has not read all the novels. It was enlightening to see the areas of Rione Luzzati where the books' tales begin but then also have a peek at the more affluent sections that are relevant in the stories. It was great to see what could be the school, library, and piazzas where the girls and friends are seen. I loved seeing some important areas of Naples (past and present), the underground Greek cisterns and Roman theaters, and the visit to Ischia (a wonderful tour). Maps and aerial views were informative. Now, one can get a better perspective on how the city was during the time of the novels. The open discussion at the end focused on common questions that readers could have about the plots, the author (a pseudonym), who did it (a murder), and the lives of the working class in a Neopolitan ghetto.This session helped me understand more clearly the issues that were brought out in the novels showcased some great areas of the city!
This seminar was extremely interesting and well organized; Danielle brought the Ferrante books alive! Fans of her Neapolitan Quartet will really enjoy this seminar. I've been to Italy several times but never to Naples, and now I definitely want to go.