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Agostino by Alberto Moravia
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Agostino (original 1944; edition 1974)

by Alberto Moravia

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English (4)  Finnish (1)  All languages (5)
Showing 4 of 4
Moravia addresses sexuality through the eyes of a thirteen year old young man burgeoning adolescence facing a summer of angst and turmoil. Realizing his mother is also a woman, he finds his sexual attraction to her torture. Innocent, uninformed this youth crosses paths with a group street urchins and learns a worldly, unsavory side of life along with behavior he never knew existed.

Agostino wrestles with the changes he is feeling, the sensual stirrings and jealousy towards his mother and her young beau. Desperately trying to squash his overbearing desire for his mother, we ride the wave of emotions puberty's ugly head arouses.

Agostino's mother needs a behavior check and open her eyes to the fact her boy is on the precipice of manhood. You have a sense she isn't aware of her son's recent behavior changes and attitude towards her. In tune with her own sexuality but blind to her sons blossoming curiosity. A frustrating, bold and provocative read, very interesting perspective from the eyes of sexuality through a thirteen year old male.

"But the intensity of his filial vanity and the turmoil of his infatuation would linger with him for many years to come." ( )
  Melinda_H | Apr 22, 2014 |
Moravia addresses sexuality through the eyes of a thirteen year old young man burgeoning adolescence facing a summer of angst and turmoil. Realizing his mother is also a woman, he finds his sexual attraction to her torture. Innocent, uninformed this youth crosses paths with a group street urchins and learns a worldly, unsavory side of life along with behavior he never knew existed.

Agostino wrestles with the changes he is feeling, the sensual stirrings and jealousy towards his mother and her young beau. Desperately trying to squash his overbearing desire for his mother, we ride the wave of emotions puberty's ugly head arouses.

Agostino's mother needs a behavior check and open her eyes to the fact her boy is on the precipice of manhood. You have a sense she isn't aware of her son's recent behavior changes and attitude towards her. In tune with her own sexuality but blind to her sons blossoming curiosity. A frustrating, bold and provocative read, very interesting perspective from the eyes of sexuality through a thirteen year old male.

"But the intensity of his filial vanity and the turmoil of his infatuation would linger with him for many years to come." ( )
  Melinda_H | Apr 22, 2014 |
Now we're talking. Moravia's got style!
This is a short novel. The story is simple, not even necessarily original (a Freudian coming-of-age tale). But... it was fun to read. I was immediately drawn into Agostino's world. I wanted to keep reading it.
This is style. ( )
  donato | Apr 29, 2011 |
This novel could be, according to the terse language, a precursor of the Nouveau Roman. Moravia portrays the soulscape of a thirteen years old boy.
  hbergander | Apr 4, 2011 |
Showing 4 of 4
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Alberto Moraviaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Benítez, EstherTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"A thirteen-year-old boy spending the summer at a Tuscan seaside resort feels displaced in his beautiful widowed mother's affections by her cocksure new companion and strays into the company of some local young toughs and their unsettling leader, a fleshy older boatman with six fingers on each hand. Initially repelled by their squalor and brutality, repeatedly humiliated for his well-bred frailty and above all for his ingenuousness in matters of women and sex, the boy nonetheless finds himself masochistically drawn back to the gang's rough games. And yet what he has learned is too much for him to assimilate; instead of the manly calm he had hoped for he is beset by guilty curiosity and an urgent desire to sever, at any cost, the thread of troubled sensuality that binds him to his mother still. Alberto Moravia's classic and yet still startling portrait of innocence lost was written in 1941 but rejected by Fascist censors and not published until 1944, when it became a best seller and secured the author the first literary prize of his career. Revived here in a sparkling new translation by Michael F. Moore, Agostino is poised to enthrall and astonish a twenty-first-century audience"--… (more)

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