Essays

German and Italian cultures of memory

Christoph Cornelißen, © Eutopia Magazine  If discussion turns today to cultures of memory, these are mostly thought to involve the variety of national forms that they take: days of remembrance and…

From the Front of the Great War

Letters from Italian Jewish soldiers in World War I – who would die in the Holocaust The Anticolis, for instance, had 13 children, of whom four would fight in WWI:…

Laura Fermi, Ordinary Genius

“Put your grandmother Laura first, ahead of Enrico,” I can still hear my mother urging me. These were not exactly Nella Fermi Weiner’s last words, but she said them to…

Quaestio De Centauris

In the fall, crowning a twelve year effort by W.W. Norton’s editor Bob Weil, Primo Levi’s complete works will be available in English for the first time. Norton’s Liveright imprint…

The Rebuilder

By reimagining landmark New York buildings like the Astor Library, which became the Public Theater, Giorgio Cavaglieri championed the architectural preservation that shaped the modern city   “Architecture,” said Vincent…

A Refugee Camp at Cinecittà

The Cinecittà Refugee Camp (1944–1950) Yes, they have sacked and destroyed it; the few remaining buildings accommodate only destitute, displaced families. But permit me to believe that on the highest…

Spina’s Shadow

“Darling, this is Alessandro Spina, who is trying to make Italians feel guilty about their colonial crimes.” Three months after Alessandro Spina’s death in July 2013, Ilario Bertoletti, his Italian…

The Fosse Ardeatine

The Massacre at the Fosse Ardeatine. History, Myth, Ritual, and Symbol   Over the course of seventy years, national memory, historiography and the justice system have shown profound ambivalence towards…

Sixty Years Fighting Oblivion

The Center for Contemporary Jewish Documentation in Milan In a collection of essays published by Yad Vashem in 2009, David Bankier and Dan Michman devote one chapter to the simultaneous…