Category Archives: The Arts

Movies, books, music: my soul food not to fall into oblivion.

Mafia Republic, a true crime book by J. Dickie – review

mafia-republic

Mafia Republic: Italy’s Criminal Curse. Cosa Nostra, ‘ndrangheta and Camorra from 1946 to the Present by John Dickie My rating: 5 of 5 stars … a wise traveller should bring this book with him on an Italian holiday and read it while tanning on a gorgeous Sicilian beach. As I was researching for my book…

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Brave New World Revisited by Aldous Huxley (1958): Trump, Berlusconi and Brexit were already scaringly there

Aldous Huxley

The essay Brave New World Revisited is an astonishing prediction of the XXI century’s shrinking democracy in the West. Here is an annotated long extract I edited as part of my research work for Silvio Berlusconi’s Italy. In times of Brexit, Trumpism, abandon of social commitment and triumph of ignorance, I think it is worth re-reading…

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29 Settembre: happy birthday to Modena ‘beat’ music capital

29-settembre-2016-concert-Modena-Maurizio-Vandelli

When the folk revival and then the rock revolution of the 60s arrived in Italy, it landed in Modena. Amid Ferrari and Maserati cars, balsamic vinegar producers, tortellini restaurants and small industrial enterprises scattered around the province, ‘beat’ music started to bloom almost unexpectedly in that ‘little town, bastard place’, as Francesco Guccini, one of…

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My top ten non-fiction books about today’s Italy (in English) – and a modest picture of the country

Ideal-City-Map-of-Hell

My top ten books are a virtual guided tour that wants to take you to the heart and the soul of what may seem like the most European of countries. It’s a voyage, sometimes dark and sometimes funny, throughout “Good Italy” and “Bad Italy”, an attempt to let the reader scratch at the reassuring surface…

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