Return as Restoration and Restitution

  • Michela Baldo


This chapter discusses the findings of the textual analysis of code-switching, that is the switch from a language to another, in Ricci’s trilogy (1990, 1993, 1997), Paci’s Italian Shoes (2002) and Melfi’s Italy Revisited (2009), in the light of the social narratives of return which surround the Italian translations of these works (Ricci 2004; Paci 2007; Melfi 2009). The analysis confirms how the code-switched items categorised in this body of writing are also commonly found in other diasporic writing, and that code-switching involves linguistic areas which are also likely to be code-switched in oral conversation. Moreover, it confirms how code-switching, by focusing on elements such as origins and sense of guilt, contributes to the construction of narratives of return which are framed in terms of restoration of a sense of wholeness and restitution of loss as a result of the fractures opened up by emigration or as a result of the loss of memory about such emigration.


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Michela Baldo
    • 1
  1. 1.Modern Languages and CulturesUniversity of HullHullUK

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