Bontempelli, Massimo

Bontempelli, Massimo

Bontempelli, Massimo (mäsˈsēmō bōntĕmpĕlˈlē), 1878–1960, Italian writer and critic. One of the first of the intellectuals to support fascism, he was also a convert to futurism for a time. He is best known for his fiction—bizzare, intellectual, and beautifully written—which was influential in the development of magic realism. Among his works are the novels La vita operosa [the active life] (1920) and Il figlio di due madri (1920, tr. The Boy with Two Mothers, 2000). He also wrote poetry and plays.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Bontempelli, Massimo


Born May 12, 1878, in Como; died July 23, 1960, in Rome. Italian writer.

Between 1926 and 1929, Bontempelli supervised the journal Novecento in Rome and was the theoretician of the literary tendency called Novecentism, which proclaimed the emancipation of the creative power of fantasy from reality (for example, in the book Literary Novecentism, 1931). He advanced the formulation of magical realism, which combined realistic concreteness and grotesque fantasy and confused the regularities of the real world, in the novels A Son of Two Mothers (1929), People in Time (1937), and others.


Tutto narratore, vols. 1–7. [Milan], 1938.
In Russian translation:
“Ostrov Iren.” In Ital’ianskaia novella XX veka. Moscow, 1969.


Russo, L. Inarratori (1850–1950). Milan-Messina, [1951].
Gargiulo, A. Letteratura italiana del novecento. Florence, 1958.
Baldacci, L. M. Bontempelli. Turin, [1967].


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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