Goliarda Sapienza (1924-1996) was born in the Sicilian city of Catania, into a staunchly anti-fascist family. At sixteen, she moved to Rome to study at the Academy of Dramatic Arts, and during the 1950s and '60s she was an actress in both films and the theater. She worked with, among others, Luchino Visconti (in Senso) and Francesco Maselli. Her novels include Lettera aperta (1967), Il filo di mezzogiorno (1969) and Luniversità di Rebibbia (1983); Io, Jean Gabin (2010) and her most important work, The Art of Joy, remained unpublished until after her death.
Anne Milano Appel, Ph.D., a former library director and language teacher, has been translating professionally for over fifteen years, and is a member of ALTA, ATA, NCTA and PEN. Many of her book-length translations have been published, and shorter works that she has authored or translated have appeared in other professional and literary venues.
Excerpted from THE ART OF JOY: A Novel by Goliarda Sapienza, translated by Anne Milano Appel, published in July 2013 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, LLC. Copyright © 2008 by Giulio Einaudi; Copyright © 2013 by Anne Milano Appel. All rights reserved.