You may notice the pretentious change of title. Well, that’s because when I checked this morning, despite my settings, I’m searchable via some engines. Alas. I went with Italian, because although I have only unpleasant memories of studying the language in college for a semester, the inspiration for the title is a narrative of a year in Italy.
Fanny Kemble, an English actress and the author of the narrative, spent a year in Italy following her separation from her husband, an American slaveholder, in the 1840s. By leaving her husband, she relinquished her right to custodial care of her daughters. It took her nearly a decade to work up the nerve to leave her husband because of the effect it would have on her relationship with her daughters, and although she didn’t write about the pain of separation in her published work, she titled it Ye.ar of Con.solation, an obvious reference. When I began thinking about blogging and about how I envisioned the year ahead of us, her book immediately came to mind. And so, when it happened that I needed to move and hide this blog, another of her titles came to me, Further Records. Kemble lived a long life and wrote multiple memoirs, Further Records being the title of her last one.
As far as I know, Kemble never lost a child, but I have always imagined how wrenching her choice must have been for her, and how she must have felt judged as a failure as a wife and mother.