Nocturnal itineraries
Occultism and the metamorphic self in Florentine Futurism
in Back to the Futurists
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This chapter explores the specific texture of the Florentine cultural milieu in which the group of L'ltalia Futurista operated. It focuses on the work of one of its representatives, Irma Valeria. In 'Occultismo e arte nuova' Valeria elucidates her aesthetic position. The chapter determines what the different shades of blue, together with illuminated nights and skies, stand for in this writer's vision of the world, and in her conception of gender and the self. It intends to build upon previous scholarship on gender issues in Futurism, focusing especially on the paradoxical virile aspects of new female subjects that the women of the movement emphasised in order to gain more power and recognition. The chapter shows the cultural roots of a new type of metamorphic self (a type at times female, and at others gender neutral), and its political implications in the context of early twentieth-century Italian society.

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