Giovanni Pascoli Giorgio Agamben, Giovanni Pascoli

The eternal child

  • pages: 96 - 14x20
  • published: 01/04/2012
Giorgio Agamben Giorgio Agamben
Giovanni Pascoli Giovanni Pascoli


When in 1903 Giovanni Pascoli – oneof the most important Italian poets – collected his ideas on poetry in this famous but rarely found book, he did a lot more than define poetics. The “eternal child” that speaks within us “confusing his voice with ours” is not simply a figure from mankind’s childhood or an image of the metaphorical language of poetry. It is a disturbing and ferocious creature in which language is born (“it is the Adam who first gives a name to things”) but in which it also dies and wastes away. As Agamben shows in his introductory essay, Il fanciullino is one of the most profound reflections on the place that gives origin not to the word, but to the “voice” of poetry.