A new Twitter account claiming to be that of the Italian novelist is fake, according to her English language publisher Europa Editions. But it gives us occasion to ponder whether Twitter would be an appropriate venue for the pseudonymous author, who has famously defended her reputation as an international woman of mystery as a matter of putting the work above the writer’s identity. As she told The Paris Review:
It’s not the book that counts, but the aura of its author. If the aura is already there, and the media reinforces it, the publishing world is happy to open its doors and the market is very happy to welcome you. If it’s not there but the book miraculously sells, the media invents the author, so the writer ends up selling not only his work but also himself, his image.
That would suggest Ferrante—whoever she (he?) is—is unlikely to join the hordes of contemporary authors who regularly use social media to hawk their books and, more accurately, themselves. Then again, Ferrante undoubtedly has benefited from her aura of mystery, from the mask she puts on for her audience, from the constant performance all this entails—which suggests she would be right at home in the Twitterverse.