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Venice IncognitoMasks in the Serene Republic$
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James Johnson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780520267718

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520267718.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

Casanova’s Carnival

Casanova’s Carnival

Chapter:
(p.2) (p.3) CHAPTER 1 Casanova’s Carnival
Source:
Venice Incognito
Author(s):

James H. Johnson

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520267718.003.0001

This chapter focuses on Giacomo Casanova and his experiences with the Venetian carnival and with masks. His life was a lifelong masquerade. Born without noble origins, Casanova transformed his roots. He traveled under assumed names and changed his wardrobe to suit his serial selves. He donned masks to cover his true roots. While Casanova manipulated his life, he resigned his life’s authorship to fate. Casanova may have been the master of self-fashioning but his selves were successive and serial, made true despite the inconsistencies by his professed sincerity of intentions. Casanova believed that humans were powerless to direct the larger course. Near the end of his memoirs, Casanova wrote: “My will, far from declaring me free, was only an instrument which Fortune used to make what she would of me”.

Keywords:   Giacomo Casanova, Venetian carnival, masks, masquerade, self-fashioning

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