Parallel to his distinguished career as a journalist, Durante was also a scholar and translator of extraordinary accomplishments. Like Cesare Pavese, he was enamored with American literature. The romance of the open road, infinite vistas, and the music of America struck a profound chord in him. His taste was eclectic, translating the seven novels of John Fante, the novels of Bret Easton Ellis, and the poetry of Raymond Carver.
His magnum opus is Italoamericana published by Moindadori in two volumes: Storia e letteratura degli italiani negli Stati Uniti, 1776-1880 (2001) and 1880-1943 (2005); the second volume was translated into English and published by Fordham University Press (2014) as Italoamericana: The Literature of the Great Migration, 1880-1943 which Durante himself edited with Robert Viscusi, Anthony Julian Tamburri, and James Periconi.
Francesco Durante with Robert Viscusi
Francesco Durante with Anthony Tamburri and Antonio Monda