An admirable war of Art and Nature. The first flights of the aerostatic balloon in the poems by Alfieri, Monti and Parini

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Abstract

The article investigates the reaction of the Italian literary community of the late Eighteenth century towards one of the scientific discoveries that revolutionized human life, namely the first balloon flight, which took place in 1783. A brief introduction dedicated to the context and the historical-literary debate gravitated around that epochal event will be followed by the analysis of three exemplary case studies, namely the poems dedicated to the balloon by Vittorio Alfieri, Vincenzo Monti and Giuseppe Parini. The choice of these three eminent authors is certainly not arbitrary, given that their work was undoubtedly among the most influential in Italy in the second half of the eighteenth century. Methodologically, the study focuses on the application of close reading and stylistics tools. The purpose of the analysis is to show how the intellectuals of the time reacted to the success of the first human flight experience, amid enthusiasm, invitations to prudence and condemnation of the hybris linked to technocratic progress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)369-388
Number of pages20
JournalIl Capitale Culturale
Volume2021
Issue number23
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

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