Italy Seen from Sweden and Sweden Seen from Italy Selma and Italian Translations Anna Smedberg Bondesson University of Copenhagen laces and perspectives are inherently intertwined. A place is necessarily viewed from somewhere: a specific perspective or point of view. Perspective, too, depends on and is bound to place as it is situated in space and time. Sweden and Italy, two distinct countries and cultures, are placed at opposite ends of the European vertical axis both geographically and imaginatively. Within this perspective Sweden represents the cold, controlled north, while Italy is associated with the warm, spontaneous south. Due to these differences a fascination has always existed--a simultaneous attraction and repulsion--with regard to such European opposites. This fascination has led to a mutual exoticizing practice throughout history that has emphasized and enlarged the distance and differences rather than bringing the cultures closer together. I wish heuristically to juxtapose these practices in order to facilitate their intercultural performance, transaction, and "discussion." Many parallels can be drawn between the Swedish-Italian practices and the Anglo-Italian cultural transactions as described in the volume Performing National Identity. In both cases, the performative aspects of intercultural transactions and relationships should not be considered just in colonial
Scandinavian Studies – Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study
Published: Apr 11, 2011
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