An uncompromising yet beautiful portrait of the life of Italian immigrants on the Lower East Side of Manhattan in the s, Christ in Concrete is the. Pietro di Donato’s “Christ in Concrete”. The long-lost novel that inspired Jimmy Breslin to write “The Short Sweet Dream of Eduardo Gutierrez.”. An uncompromising yet beautiful portrait of the life of Italian immigrants on the Lower East Side of Manhattan in the s, Christ in Concrete is the story of a.

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It’s hard to quite put a finger on how di Donato pulls this off, yet he does.

If you have an older Salon account, please enter your username and password below: The well-being of a score of children is immediately threatened as there is no social safety net. However, it is not so much a personification as a deification.

Di Donato’s characters spoke to themselves and to each other in an elegant English that reflected a literal translation of their native Italian. There are no discussion topics on this book yet.

Both of these occurred in the book and became so convoluted, I just started skimming until they were over. I have not read cooncrete more devastating first chapter. The translation is a kind of direct transposing of the words as ordered in Italian which successfully marks the book with a distinctive prose style. Like Gregor Samsa conncrete up to discover his transformation, Geremio’s first thought on finding himself sinking in the cement is, “What kind of dream was he having?

It causes a disjunction where one concretw reading what must be foreign colloquialism with familiarity. My paternal Grandfather born in Italy was a stone mason and I only wish he were alive to ask him his experiences. And faith both sustained and fell short.


Afterwards, we get all the predictable scene This novel is the puffed-up version of a story, first published in Esquire magazine, which went on to be named “Best short story of “. For them, the promise of the American Dream exists at the expense of their struggle, concretd than as a safe harbor from it.

Christ in Concrete – Wikipedia

Framed by death and trajedy, the novel does offer glimpses of hope. An uncompromising yet beautiful portrait of the life of Italian immigrants on the Lower East Side of Manhattan in the s, Christ in Concrete is the story of a twelve-year-old boy who must support his family after his father’s untimely death.

They live and die for Job. The book alternates passages of Faulknerian stream-of-consciousness — the narrative often becomes expressionistically inarticulate in scenes where the characters experience extreme stress – with semi-objective third person point of view passages. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Our thoughts and passions run deep and that is obvious in this book. Lorne Bair Rare Books Published: It’s sometimes as florid as its opera-loving characters. Sep 19, Allie rated it really liked it.

Somehow they get by, the family and the extended family are strong.

Pietro di Donato’s “Christ in Concrete”

The novel presents its criticisms of society — the greedy and bigoted bosses, the indifferent bureaucracy, the ineffective and self-seeking Catholic clergy — by showing, not telling, no direct attacks against these institutions are made, either by the author or characters. View all 4 comments. Make no mistake though, this novel isn’t trying to play nice and it goes in for the kill several times with unexpected imagery and frightening details.


This wedding chapter, “Fiesta,” is an astounding tour de force. At the time of its publication init received accolades along with another contemporary novel, The Grapes of Wrath. A pioneer of classic radio, she was one of the first women to create, write, produce and star in a long-running hit when she premiered her serial comedy-drama “The Rise of the Goldbergs”later known as “The Goldbergs” [Wiki].

A powerful work, portraying in agonizingly reality the experience of recent immigrants, in this case Italians in America as they struggle to find their way, scratch out a living, sweat, suffer and die in the merciless construction industry of the s.

Christ in Concrete by Pietro Di Donato

Ships from the UK. The plot could be predictable. Want to Read saving…. Earth was a terrible thing, a solid dead-live sea of clay and stems, a brown foundation vastness hysterically firm. iin

Black cloth, top and bottom edges slightly worn, few waterstains top of block, interior age-colored, cnrist very good; dj worn with chips and tears.

Jurgis Rudkis works harder, but things only worsen. Collectible 77 years old book ; a metaphor to many for the immigrant experience in America, of early last century.

Christ In Concrete

First, di Donato’s powers as a writer humble me. Black cloth, with gilt illustration and lettering, 8vo. Christ in Concrete First edition.