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Poker Face

Eric Hobsbawm: Palmiro Togliatti

8 April 2010
Palmiro Togliatti: A Biography 
by Aldo Agosti, translated by Vanna Derosas and Jane Ennis.
Tauris, 339 pp., £51.50, 1 84511 726 3
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Il sarto di Ulm: Una possibile storia del PCI 
by Lucio Magri.
Il Saggiatore, 454 pp., €21, October 2009, 978 88 428 1608 9
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... rule, giving the anti-Fascist resistance a far larger role in the country’s liberation than the opposition could have had in comprehensively defeated Japan and Germany. The point is well made in LucioMagri’s highly intelligent, melancholy retrospect on the PCI’s eventual self-destruction. The 12 months between the battle of Monte Cassino in 1944 and the German surrender allowed the PCI, by ...


Alexander Clapp: The Theorists in Syntagma Square

8 April 2015
... elite and limited access to the foreign funds that allowed Pasok to dangle gifts before each sector of Greek society. Syriza can’t give handouts. The party generates support instead by being what LucioMagri faulted the Italian Communist Party for never becoming: a ‘light party’ that interprets society instead of trying to transform it. ‘As a union leader under Pasok your job was to be ...

Villa Lampedusa

Marina Warner

5 January 1989
The Last Leopard: A Life of Giuseppe di Lampedusa 
by David Gilmour.
Quartet, 223 pp., £15.95, November 1988, 0 7043 2564 0
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... the composer Giordano. But disaffection warred in him with a lyric sense. His favourite writers were Shakespeare and Keats, whom he placed among the grossi – the fat writers – as opposed to the magri or supermagri – the lean masters of implicit narrative, like Jane Austen and Stendhal. Gilmour points out that when he was writing The Leopard, in the last two years of his life, he was ...
12 March 2009
... strand, neither official nor operaista, that remained more authentically Gramscian than anything its leadership could offer, or ultimately tolerate. Expelled in 1969, the Manifesto group around LucioMagri, Rossana Rossanda and Luciana Castellina went on to create the newspaper of that name that continues to this day, the one genuinely radical daily in Europe. Over the years, it was this current ...

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