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In Her Own Words Federica Marchesini Image Credit: Fairlady
In Her Own Words Federica Marchesini Image Credit: Fairlady

In Her Own Words - Federica Marchesini

Born ‘in fair Verona’, the town of Romeo and Juliet, Federica self-published her novel, Afritalian, about her real love affair with South Africa.

Shireen Fisher

When I was 16, I went to France on a language exchange, and a sense of wanderlust hit me. Since then, I’ve never stopped wandering… out of Italy. I’ve never seen Italy as a home to stay in, but rather as the home to leave.

I was almost 30 when I arrived in Cape Town. I found love, then a job – then I lost love and my job (by choice). Every time I wanted to leave, something incredibly good happened to me. Now Cape Town is home with a capital ‘H’.

Writing and teaching languages are related. When you have a passion for words and a pinch of talent, you can teach, but you can also turn your words into a story.

Lingo, my language school, offers Italian, French and English. We also have ‘Venerdì al Bar’, an aperitivo evening on the first Friday of every month; Italian movies with subtitles every couple of months; and workshops on Italian food, gestures – even swear words!

I still have the notebook I used when I was 11 in which I described people’s physical characteristics. Even then I was collecting notes to be used sometime, somewhere in the future...

Afritalian is the story of Ate


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