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Il sito ufficiale di Ferdinando Camon

Ferdinando Camon


Life Everlasting

Translated by John Shepley

The Marlboro Press, USA

 

Life Everlasting

"I have written," says Camon, "about the Resistance in the countryside in Life Everlasting which with the two other novels titled The Fifth Estate and Memorial form a narrative, cycle that I have called "Il Ciclo degli ultimi." Ultimi-the last-the lowest-not only in the biblical sense but also in the social sense: they are the last who shall be the first (owing to their degree of humanity, of morality, of religiosity), but at present they are the hardest pressed the most exploited, at the very bottom of the social piramid." Life Everlasting describes the entering of history into this beyond words poor, absolutely immobile world, "I chose recent history," Camon goes on, "which I knew from first-hand experience, even if I was only a small boy at the time: the time of the Peasants' Resistance. On the part of the peasantry that Resistance was a visceral, furious and chaotic reaction against the violence of the invaders. They were invaders and fascists (because they were from the city) and Germans (because they were foreigners) ... The Peasants' Resistance was a vendetta waged against their violence; a barbaric vendetta, without ideological content at all: The peasant partisans contrived to sleep in the open, to use the ditches to get fromplace to place, to keep low and out of sight; to set ambushes. They knew nothing about communism or capitalism. They had no ideas at all about creating new Italy for after the war. In Life Everlasting I have described certain actions, certain reprisals, a certain phase in our history. "In all the various parts of the world poverty and violence always follow a similar pattern. There is a kinship between the Veneto peasant and the peasant of the Spanish meseta and the Argentine pampa. I think that is one of the reasons that explains why even books focused as closely as mine are upon their particular surroundings have nevertheless been translated and read in various parts of the world - in France, in Germany, in the Soviet Union, in Hungary, in Argentina."

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