Ma la vita è una battaglia- lettere di libertà e determinazione (“But life is a battle- letters of freedom and determination“), is a selection of letters curated and translated by Laura Ganzetti (from Il tè tostato), and published by L’Orma editore. It’s a small book, wrapped into a classic letter envelop as the other books of the series “I Pacchetti”, and it’s worth reading as well as showing in your own library.
Laura Ganzetti carefully selected a number of letters written by Charlotte Brontë between 1832 and 1854, analyzing the words of the woman who wrote Jane Eyre, looking for that very strenght and determination which let her fulfil her dream and become a successful writer despite all the difficulties of life. In fact she did become a successful writer, but this never changed her.
Charlotte’s life was indeed “a battle”, everyone who knows even a small part of her story knows that, but the very interesting thing in this selection of letters is that, reading them, you can spot a less visible change, deeper and complex, which characterized Charlotte’s path- the battle between innovation and tradition.
Charlotte’s thought about some matters like women education, marriage, women’s role in society, is pretty avant-garde for her time, as well as her ambition to become a writer is a strong sign of an unconventional mind; yet, as for what concerns her private life, Charlotte’s fulfilment and happiness seem to be also related to domestic life, to tradition. The revolution of being a writer in a world where men were the writers it’s a personal one, a personal revolution mitigated by the strenght of her roots, by her attachement to the family, by the custom of the life at the Parsonage.
The very same forces which pushed the most ambitious of the Brontë sisters towards the outside and the fulfilment of her desires lived with some other forces- different, but strong as well, which always led her to her roots, to her origins, back home. We enjoyed and loved this selection of letters because in these pages we could see our beloved Charlotte exactly in that point of her life- when she made her dream come true as a writer, and fulfilled her happiness as a woman.