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y separately published work icon Paese Fortunato : Romanzo single work   novel  
Issue Details: First known date: 1981... 1981 Paese Fortunato : Romanzo
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

Depicting 'migrant life in Sydney...Rosa Cappiello follows the tormented lives of a random group of European women, from their incarceration in a hostel to their struggles in a series of derelict rooms and flats. They keep in touch with each other not through affection or genuine solidarity but purely through need, to escape their own desolation and solitude...This unusual and disconcerting view of migrant life does not aim to stand in judgment or reveal general truths on Australian conditions and society. It is instead a subjective account with a universal application, relating not just to Italian migrants in Australia but to all migrants everywhere. The characters are victims less of their new environment than of the circumstances which led them to seek change; ultimately they are the victims of their own natures and of the inevitable discrepancy between dream and reality.' (Source: dustjacket, Oh Lucky Country, 1984 edition)


  • Partly autobiographical novel.


* Contents derived from the St Lucia, Indooroopilly - St Lucia area, Brisbane - North West, Brisbane, Queensland,:University of Queensland Press , 1984 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Introduction, Gaetano Rando , single work criticism (p. [v]-xi)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Language: Italian
Alternative title: Oh Lucky Country
Language: English
    • Sydney, New South Wales,: Sydney University Press , 2003 .
      Extent: 175p.
      • Introduction by Gaetano Rando.
      ISBN: 9781920897017, 1920897011
      Series: y separately published work icon Classic Australian Works CAW Sydney University Press (publisher), Sydney : Sydney University Press , Z1087478 2003- series - publisher

      'This collection features books that should always be available for readers and students as part of our national cultural heritage. These works retain their influence and impact, the richness and quality of their writing, and their importance as a record and reflection of Australian life and perspectives, but have disappeared from traditional publication.'

      (Source: Classic Australian Works website, )

    • Sydney, New South Wales,: Sydney University Press , 2009 .
      Extent: xiv, 198p.p.
      • Introduction by Nicole Moore; translator's introduction by Gaetano Rando.
      ISBN: 9781920898977
      Series: y separately published work icon Australian Classics Library Bruce Bennett (editor), Robert Dixon (editor), Sydney University Press (publisher), Sydney : Sydney University Press , 2009- Z1613164 2009 series - publisher novel poetry short story

      The Australian Classics Library series is intended 'to make classic texts of Australian literature more widely available for the secondary school and undergraduate university classroom, and to the general reader. The series is co-edited by Emeritus Professor Bruce Bennett of the University of New South Wales and Professor Robert Dixon, Professor of Australian Literature at the University of Sydney, in conjunction with SETIS, Sydney University Press, AustLit and the Copyright Agency Limited. Each text is accompanied by a fresh scholarly introduction and a basic editorial apparatus drawn from the resources of AustLit.'

      Source: Sydney University Press website,
      Sighted: 11/08/2009

Works about this Work

Overview John Gatt-Rutter , 2014 single work criticism
— Appears in: The Bilingual Cockatoo : Writing Italian Australian Lives 2014; (p. 186-209)
Rosa Cappiello’s 'Paese fortunato' and the Poetics of Alienation Isobel Grave , Giancarlo Chiro , 2010 single work criticism
— Appears in: Transnational Literature , May vol. 2 no. 2 2010;
'In this paper we have sought to characterise Rosa Cappiello’s art as the poetics of alienation, firstly in the attitude it reflects towards the dominant Anglo-Australian culture of the day and towards the ethnic communities. [...] In the second half of this paper we have viewed her poetics from a technical point of view, focusing on her experimentation with syntactic categories in order to create effects of fragmentation (14, 15).'
Recent Italian-Australian Narrative Fiction by First Generation Writers Gaetano Rando , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Kunapipi , vol. 31 no. 1 2009; (p. 100-115)
The publication in 2008 of the English version of Emilio Gabbrielli's (2000) novel Polenta e Goanna and the new re-introduced edition of Rosa Cappiello's Oh Lucky Country in 2009 constitutes something of a landmark in Italian-Australian writing. Cappiello's novel is now the second most-published work by a first generation Italian-Australian writer after Raffaello Carboni's (1855) Eureka Stockade. Although Italians in Australia have been writing about their experiences since the mid 1800s and have produced texts such as those by Salvado (1851), Ercole (1932) and Nibbi (1937),a coherent corpus of Italian-Australian writing has developed only after the post-World War Two migration boom which saw some 360,000 Italian-born migrants entering Australia between 1947 and 1972. While the majority have contributed in some way to Australia's economic development (see Castles et al 1992) only a few hundred have written about their experiences, producing memoirs, (auto)biographies, poetry, theatre and narrative fiction. Although this writing has made relatively little impact on mainstream Australian literary culture and has attracted relatively little attention it deals with political, social and cultural issues and an alternative perspective of Australia from the periphery that makes it worthy of critical attention. [Author's abstract]
Looking for/at Australia : Roots and Repulsion in Contemporary Australian Women's Writing Marilena Parlati , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Imagined Australia : Reflections around the Reciprocal Construction of Identity between Australia and Europe 2009; (p. 251-263)
'No matter how seriously attacked and deranged, identity remains a keyword for contemporaneity. Political agendas and propagandas are packed full with claims and calls for new or old senses of belonging; nations and narrations abound with discourses focussed upon finding ro recuperating personal and collective memories, which might thus safeguard one's dreamy rootedness and secure location in the world. And yet, within these manifestoes lie dispersed and abjected bodies, weak and nomadic subjects which crowd the bitter arena of contemporary philosophical reflections as well as political praxis and 'vernacular' reality (CF. Kreisteva 1982; Vattimo 1999; Butler 1990, 1993; de Lauretis 1990; Bugliese 2007c) Ethnicity is another term one often encounters in the public as well as private spheres, especially in the Anglophone context. It has replaced the previous race markers in general as well as in critical parlance. And yet, it is a term which seems to be still deeply dangerous in its constructing borders of inclusion and exclusion in/out of any given community. In this view, (visible) ethnics exist insofar as they are recognized (and recognize themselves) as such in vertiginous and self-perpetuating but distorted mirror scene. What is obliterated in such positions is the obvious fact that every human being is ethnically located; of course, the term is a useful tool in the hands of mainstream, powerful groups often advocating multi-forms of marginalization (cf Knippling 1996; Yoshino 1999).' (p251)
Magical Numbers Ivor Indyk , 2009 single work criticism
— Appears in: Resourceful Reading : The New Empiricism, eResearch and Australian Literary Culture 2009; (p. 142-155)
The essay looks at the profitability of literary books for publishers, taking as examples data from the University of Queensland Press and some other publishers. The empirical research finds as the baseline reality of literary publishing 'its unprofitability, its fundamentally uncommercial nature' (147). Three case studies reveal that factors other than literary criteria tend to contribute to a book's commercial success.
Untitled Margot Luke , 1985 single work review
— Appears in: Fremantle Arts Centre Broadsheet , March - April vol. 4 no. 2 1985; (p. 2-3)

— Review of Paese Fortunato : Romanzo Rosa R. Cappiello , 1981 single work novel
Untitled Joseph Gioscio , 1985 single work review
— Appears in: LiNQ , vol. 13 no. 1 1985; (p. 70-74)

— Review of Paese Fortunato : Romanzo Rosa R. Cappiello , 1981 single work novel
Untitled Tony Pagliaro , 2009 single work review
— Appears in: Transnational Literature , November vol. 2 no. 1 2009;

— Review of Paese Fortunato : Romanzo Rosa R. Cappiello , 1981 single work novel
Australia Seen With Fresh Eyes Helen Brown , 1985 single work review
— Appears in: The Canberra Times , 6 April 1985; (p. 15)

— Review of The Chinaman Don'o Kim , 1984 single work novel ; Paese Fortunato : Romanzo Rosa R. Cappiello , 1981 single work novel
Terror Australiana Franco Schiavoni , 1982 single work review
— Appears in: The Age Monthly Review , [November] 1982; (p. 8-9)

— Review of Paese Fortunato : Romanzo Rosa R. Cappiello , 1981 single work novel
Fragmented and Entwined: Migration Stories in Sibyl's Cave and Other Australian Fiction Catherine Padmore , 2006 single work criticism
— Appears in: JASAL , no. 5 2006; (p. 25-38)

'As a writer, a reader and a migrant, I am interested in the gaps in migration narratives and in where the stories touch other stories. These features suggest the difficulty of capturing the enormity of the migrational shift in one narrative and offer a sense of the nuances contained within a single person's experiences of migration. In this article I explore some ways in which individual migration stories have similar fragmented structures and make dynamic connections to wider stories, using examples from my own and other Australian fiction.'

In addition to her own work, Sibyl's Cave, Padmore refers to Eva Sallis's Hiam (1998), Arnold Zable's Cafe Scheherazade (2001), Peter Lyssiotis and Nick Petroulias's 'New Troy' (2000) and Rosa Cappiello's Oh, Lucky Country [Paese Fortunato] (1984). 'Some of these works have fragmented structures and all contain intertextual links to other stories. The embedded stories in these texts are often not Australian in origin but have travelled to Australia from elsewhere, reflecting the migrational history that shapes one aspect of contemporary Australian identity.'

Il multiculturalismo australiano un'interpretazione soggettiva Giovanni Andreoni , 1993 single work criticism
— Appears in: Italians in Australia : Historical and Social Perspectives : Proceedings of the Conference on the Italians in Australia, the first 200 years, held at the University of Wollongong and Macquarie University, 27-29 August 1988 1993; (p. 15-22)
Le donne italiane nell'Australia multiculturale Helen Andreoni , 1988 single work criticism
— Appears in: Il Veltro , January-April vol. 32 no. 1-2 1988; (p. 215-227)

— Appears in: Italians in Australia : Historical and Social Perspectives : Proceedings of the Conference on the Italians in Australia, the first 200 years, held at the University of Wollongong and Macquarie University, 27-29 August 1988 1993; (p. 23-36)
The Grotesque Migrant Body : Rosa Cappiello's O Lucky Country Sneja Gunew , 1994 single work criticism
— Appears in: Framing Marginality : Multicultural Literary Studies 1994; (p. 93-110)
Introduction Gaetano Rando , 1984 single work criticism
— Appears in: Paese Fortunato : Romanzo 1984; (p. [v]-xi)
Last amended 18 Jul 2011 11:20:02