Shelves: literature I always feel the need to alternate one type of writing with another, completely different, to begin writing again as if I had never written anything before. There are times when I forget just how much I love Calvinos writing. That moment for me was page 38 in the Picador version that I own — at least, that is the moment I truly knew that there are depths to this book I have no hope of ever being able to plumb. A man is lost in the forest after a long, dangerous and arduous journey. In the distance, as it is getting dark, he sees a castle. He makes his way there and is shown into a room where a great number of other people are already seated and eating and drinking.

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The World The Tarot tradition was introduced to the French when they conquered Milan and Piedmont in , thus generating the Tarot of Marseilles lineage. Rather than being named after a ruling family, the Marseilles pack was named retroactively as a collective name for the French tarot card lineage all produced by a manufacturer located in Marseilles.

Thus we have a total of twelve stories… In The Tavern too the sequence of the tarots composes stories, and the seventy-eight card spread out on the table form a general pattern in which the various tales intersect. But whereas in The Castle the cards make up the individual tales are in clearly defined horizontal or vertical rows, in The Tavern they form blocks with more irregular outlines, superimposed in the central area of the general pattern, where cards that appear in almost all the tales are concentrated Tarot card spread from The Tavern.

Excerpt 5: Now that we have seen these greasy pieces of cardboard become a museum of old masters, a theatre of tragedy, a library of poems and novels, the silent brooding over down-to-earth words bound to come up along the war, following the arcane pictures, can attempt to soar higher, to perhaps heard in some theatre balcony, where their resonance transforms moth-eaten sets on a creaking stage into palaces and battlefields The Hermit, The Lovers, etc.

This analysis is the most relevant to Invisible Cities where Marco Polo tells dozens of wildly diverse stories all based the same city; here, rather than the city being the subject of interpretation it is the Tarot. One card played by a traveler could have a drastically different meaning than that of the person sitting next to them.

Some cards are pictorially highly architectural: Excerpt 6: The Ace of Cups portrays, in fact, a city with many towers and spires and minarets and domes rising above the walls. The yellow and stunted grass and the sand of the desert cover the asphalt and the sidewalks of the city, jackals howl on the dunes, in the palaces abandoned beneath The Moon the windows stand open like hollow eye sockets, rats and scorpions spread from basements and cellars Calvino is an architect of text.

I began by trying to line up Tarots at random to see if I could read a story in them… I realized the Tarots were a machine for constructing stories; I thought of a book, and I imagined its frame: the mute narrators, the forest, the inn..

I thought of constructing a kind of crossword puzzle made of tarots instead of words… And so I spent whole days taking apart and putting back together my puzzle; I invented new rules for the game, I drew hundred of patterns, in a square, a rhomboid, a star design; but some essential cards were always left out, and some superfluous ones were always there in the midst. Sounds a lot like architecture; no? Castle of Crossed Destinies.

Translated from the Italian by William Weaver. Moakley, Gertrude. The Tarot Cards. An Iconographic and Historical Study. New York: P. McLaughlin, Martin. Italo Calvino. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, Weiss, Beno. Understanding Italo Calvino. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, Weaver, William.

The Paris Review: Fall , no. Calvino, Italo. Images scanned, pp.


The Castle of Crossed Destinies

Cancel anytime. People who bought this also bought Together they form a labyrinth of literatures, known and unknown, alive and extinct, through which two readers, a male and a female, pursue both the story lines that intrigue them and one another. By literate rose on Six Memos for the Next Millennium By: Italo Calvino, Geoffrey Brock - translator Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini Length: 3 hrs and 34 mins Unabridged 5 out of 5 stars 29 Performance 5 out of 5 stars 25 Story 5 out of 5 stars 25 At the time of his death, Italo Calvino was at work on six lectures setting forth the qualities in writing he most valued and which he believed would define literature in the century to come. Here, in Six Memos for the Next Millennium, are the five lectures he completed, forming not only a stirring defense of literature but also an indispensable guide to the writings of Calvino himself.


The Castle of Crossed Destinies by Italo Calvino


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