The Pike

034202-FC222My project with Prof. Giuliana Pieri of Royal Holloway¬†to mark the 150th anniversary of the birth of Gabriele d’Annunzio with a study day at the British Library is not the only activity around this fascinating and often appalling character. Lucy Hughes-Hallett’s new biography of d’Annunzio, The Pike, came out in January and is a great read: Lucy explores d’Annunzio’s character and ambition in fascinating detail. I find him a hard man to like, but he was extraordinary and was one of the first to catch onto the potential uses of the mass media that were developing during his own lifetime, to promote his activities and, more importantly, his own image.