Read christ stopped at eboli by Carlo Levi Frances Frenaye Online


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Title : christ stopped at eboli
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ISBN : 20381743
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 479 Pages
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christ stopped at eboli Reviews

  • Laura
    2019-04-09 21:20

    You know how once in a while you run into a book that's so good you don't want it to end, so you draw read it very slowly, drawing it out? For me, this was one of those books.Christ Stopped at Eboli is the story of Levi's year living in Basilicata, in the south of Italy, where Mussolini exiled him for anti-Fascist activities. Levi, who was a doctor by training but a painter by trade, lived among a population mostly composed of peasants, along with a few run-of-the-mill bureaucrats. The book is a bit hard to classify -- it's part memoir, part political tract, part character study, but it's exquisitely written, especially when Levi is describing the peasants among whose company he spent a year. One passage, describing his housekeeper, Giulia:"Giulia was a tall and shapely woman with a waist as slender as that of an amphora between her well-developed chest and hips. In her youth she must have had a solemn and barbaric beauty. Her face was wrinkled with age and yellowed by malaria, but there were traces of former charm in its sharp, straight lines, like those of a classical temple which has lost the marbles that adorned it but kept its shape and proportions. A small head, in the shape of a lengthened oval, covered with a veil, rose above her impressively large and erect body, which breathed an animal vigor . . . . Her face as a whole had a strongly archaic character, not classical in the Greek or Roman sense, but stemming from an antiquity more mysterious and more cruel which had sprung always from the same ground, and which was unrelated to man, but linked with the soil and its everlasting animal deities. There were mingled in it cold sensuality, hidden irony, natural cruelty, impenetrable ill-humor and an immense passive power, all these bound together in a stern, intelligent and malicious expression."(Tip of the hat, of course, to the translator, Frances Frenaye.)The book has been criticized by some for portraying the peasants as ignorant, pitiable simpletons. I don't agree with the characterization at all. Levi doesn't romanticize or patronize them, certainly, but I saw nothing arrogant or condescending in his portrayal.I usually avoid books in translation -- a friend of mine once likened reading translations to having sex with a condom -- but I'm going out to buy this one tomorrow so I can read it again (mine was a library copy).

  • Tom Tabasco
    2019-04-18 21:23

    Carlo Levi was sent in exile to a Southern Italian village (current name Aliano) in the mid 1930's as a political prisoner because of his anti-fascism. This book is his recollection of one of the three years he spent there. The village is very small, isolated, and ridden with misery and illness. What could have been a dreadfully boring memoir becomes a beautiful, poetic work of art under the artistic sensitivity of Mr Levi's pen. What gives the book a true soul, and really elevates it, is the deep, heartfelt sense of longing and love that Levi has for the people he lived with in this village, and in particular for the farmers. He focuses on the misery of the farmers' condition, their fatalistic and pessimistic worldview, their stubborness, their eternal patience, their living untouched by history's grand schemes, and uncared for by the state, by anyone. These farmers live in one-room houses, with their animals under their bed, and their infants hanging over their bed, in cribs. On the walls, each of them have two images: a black Holy Mary, and, fascinating fact, President Roosevelt. That's because "America", for many southern Italians in those times, was something like paradise. Some came back from America, only to live the rest of their lives in regret. Being Italian, I'm amazed at having missed this book until now. Even at school, they didn't try to shove it down my throat as they often do in Italian schools (the BEST way to make you want to burn a book and go kill its author with your bare hands is to teach it at school. This trick really works wonders if delivered with a nasal voice, an under-average sensitivity, and a massive dose of stupidity). Christianity had a very diluted flavor in these lands, that's why the farmers live with ancient pagan traditions that have nothing to do with christian religion, like magic potions, legends, in a world where people, animals and imagination are just one thing, and nothing is too complicated or dramatic, including death. What Levi keeps hammering on is a sense of inevitable defeat of the farmer as a citizen of the state. He sees good people being exploited by whoever has money and power, and he says that the state should be a state for the farmers as well. All very well, although he often comes across as idealistic, too theoretical and naive, especially in his political reflections, articulated at the end of the book. Or perhaps he wasn't naive at all, and he was just painting himself as the man who loves the humble and defensless, since by the time he wrote this book he had already joined the Italian communist party, and he was later elected in the Senate. But my bet is, he was a rather idealistic man.Now, what I REALLY saw through this book, I have to admit, was a priviledged member of the Italian society of the '30s (Levi's family was very wealthy), a good, well educated man with an artistic sensitivity, spending 3 years as the revered "smartest guy in the village", doing nothing but painting and reading, in sunny southern Italy. How's that for an alternative to prison? Where do I sign up?On a more serious note, Levi's book is perhaps the only autobiographical book I've read where the author doesn't talk much about himself at all. Sure, a wise approach for a young politician, but also a breath of fresh air. Recommended for readers who want to immerse themselves in the silence of a primitive, ancient reality that is light years from our neurotic lives of today, but at the same time feels more deeply authentic. For those farmers, and I guess for most farmers, life has always been stripped bare, to the bone. A white, shining bone that we 21st century soft and plump westerners often forget. A hard-core experience to live through the eyes of an artistic outsider.

  • Jacob Overmark
    2019-04-23 19:20

    I would have liked to meet Carlo Levi.Despite being held a political prisoner in the blooming Fascism days of the mid-thirties Italy, he did not turn sour. At least not in his rendering of one year in one of the most rural areas of Italy.Not that he in any way withheld his stand against Fascism and how the new “state religion” left its mark on the country, but he made a point of meeting friend and foe with an open mind.Eboli, where once the train tracks parted, never to reach into the rural areas of the Catania region was the signal post, the sign that from there you are, more or less, on your own. Rome officials may be able to burden your life with taxation and regulations, but chances that they will turn up are slim.Any development, except ill adapted agricultural plans, stop here. Time stands still and has done so since the Napoleonic Wars, with very few exceptions. The society is dependent on small scale business and goats, the soil so meagre it can hardly support any crops or cattle. When taxes are due, there is no money and the taxman will have to make do with a goat or two. Nevertheless, people are fatalistically happy. Like any village Gagliano has fractions, the poor, the really poor and the more well off.Generations´ old wrongdoings and family feuds are kept alive, as are the beliefs of old, handily wrought into Catholicism. This is the kind of place Carlo Levi is thrown into. A village that welcomes the doctor/painter from the north, not paying much attention to his sentence, only remarking that “Someone in Rome must have it in for you”.Carlo Levi describes the village and the villagers with much affection, seeing for himself how Rome has abandoned the south of Italy, deeming the people there primitive and inferior.On a broader scale, there is no political influence to be gained, the area will stay underdeveloped, malaria ridden and only suitable for producing cannon fodder for the Abyssinian War – a war the southerners did not care much for anyway. It is the day to day struggle that matters, and this is what Carlo Levi portrays in such a tender way.I recommend this for a glimpse into an Italy not so long ago. It does not go into the atrocities of the Fascist regime under Mussolini, and it is not the intention of the book. It is a love letter to someone you deep down know you will never see again.

  • Jan-Maat
    2019-03-24 22:02

    Christ stopped at Eboli, down on the coast, up the in the hills the world remains pre-Christian. This is the author's account of life in one of those hill villages while in internal exile under the fascists.Levi presents most of the villagers as being so isolated from the mainstream of Italian culture that they have a pre-christian or pagan mentality or weltanschauung. For example at Christmas the poor people give presents to the rich - unlike in the Bible story were the Kings give presents to the carpenter's son - hence the title of the book. He comes to see these people as the aboriginal inhabitants of Italy crushed down by the weight by a series of alien regimes from the Romans onwards to the modern Italian state who impose themselves upon the these farmers who live in material poverty, at the same time some villagers escape to America where, whenever they can they get together and go out to the countryside and round a quiet tree have a good shit just like they did at home. A curious book.

  • Evan
    2019-04-01 17:00

    "Nothing had ever come [from Rome] but the tax collector and speeches over the radio."In Christ Stopped at Eboli, Carlo Levi describes a place that time forgot as beautifully as one could possibly describe such a place; a place so misbegotten and forlorn and godless that Christ himself, so the legend went, stopped at another town and came no further. Levi is the nominal protagonist of the book, since this is his memoir of one-year in 1935-1936 in Aliano, Italy, (renamed Gagliano in the book) as an exiled prisoner of Mussolini's fascists, but the real protagonist is the town and the state of being in which it perpetually finds itself. That state of being is manifest in the collective resignation of the downtrodden peasant residents who inhabit the dirt-poor, bleak, isolated Southern Italian hilltop town, built literally on the bones of the dead; a place so dreary and backward that the one-day annual parade at Lent, led by an image of a blackened papier-mache Madonna and a modest fireworks display that cost the peasants six months of earnings, is the highlight of their lives.Levi wrote this memoir in 1943-1944 as Italy's fascist government was crumbling and in it he recounts his forced exile in Gagliano a decade before; a sentence pronounced as the result of his anti-fascist sympathies. Though life there was austere and hard and he was not allowed to leave the village, Levi was treated like a king by the residents (it was not like a stay in Siberia). Levi, who was a writer, painter and doctor, found himself to be a novelty among the peasantry and appreciated for his willingness to mix and to grasp their plight and also to render much-needed medical care. Even though he was not a practicing doctor at that point, his medical education was superior to that of the two official town doctors, who either from senility or incompetence actually proved to be dangerous to their patients. The professional jealousies among the doctors are only the tip of the iceberg, Levi learns, in a place filled with class and tribal hatreds. In Gagliano as in most Southern Italian towns at that time, malaria was a persistent scourge, often untreated and scarring a peasantry already beset by malnutrition, back-breaking labor, crushing debt and the constant fear of elite authority, particularly the tax collector. Levi meticulously chronicles the world of the Italian peasant, the timelessness of his plight and the apathy that comes from centuries of exploitation and high-minded governments that come and go without offering solutions. As this book takes place, Mussolini's barbaric Ethiopian campaign of conquest is under way (a prelude to World War II), and the residents face conscription with barely a care. They will either live as dogs where they are or die like dogs in Africa. World War I had already hit the town disproportionately hard (50 of its sons lost from a population of barely more than 1,000 residents), yet the prospect of another war barely fazes them. War is just another of the perpetually expected misfortunes over which they have no control. Heaven, as Levi writes, is closer to the peasants than Rome. The gnomes and devils that the peasants believe live in the caves and wells and hollows of the town are more real to them than Il Duce.My thoughts at the outset of reading this book centered around how ever-so-slightly dull I thought it was, with its ample descriptions of flora and fauna and mundane village activities. But over the course of the book I realized that this was the book's strength, and that my patience was rewarded. Some readers may feel as I did that Levi sometimes comes off as a kind of inadvertent colonialist because of the air of intellectual superiority he seems to exude when describing the peasants. Levi reflects the attitudes of his time, but his broad-ranging understanding of the historical, political and social dimensions that created and maintained the peasant class and the system that exploited them reveal his understanding and balanced perspective. You'd be hard-pressed to find a book that more vividly presents a sense of life in a poor Italian village.What I also like about the book is its unsentimental tone. Levi seems as detached as he is caring. I think this is to his credit. He understands that the peasants are part of their own problem, and that like all humans they operate out of a complex set of motivations. Levi does not simplify them or condone their ignorance; he neither condemns them nor praises them, just tries to understand them and to help as best he can.Along the way we learn about the rampant sexuality endemic to village life, including among the priests with their many sire scattered across the landscape, and the peasants' customs, myths, habits and religious practices. The description of the visiting animal surgeon's castration and ovary removal operations on the village's pigs is painful to comprehend, and so is the fate of residents with burst appendixes and other maladies who can't get the treatment they need. Some of the funniest incidents in the book relate to the pompous fascist mayor's attempts to interest the peasants in the radio speeches of Il Duce, to their collective boredom.The book at different points brought to mind other great books and films with similar themes. The venality of small-town life reminded me of Sinclair Lewis' Main Street. The sense of village customs and the intercession of the outsider brought to mind the book and film of Zorba the Greek. The crushing poverty in a bleak landscape reminded me of the Luis Bunuel film, Land Without Bread and the vivid descriptions of Italian peasant lifestyles reminded me of the 1978 Ermanno Olmi Italian movie, The Tree of Wooden Clogs. It should also be noted here that director Francesco Rosi adapted this memoir into an excellent film in 1979 with the same title.Levi's book is an exquisitely rendered portrait of isolation, of being isolated in an isolated place, and of being in a place that seems isolated from time itself. It's hard to imagine such a book being better written.-----([email protected], posted originally in 2011 and re-posted with minor edit/addenda in 2017.)

  • K.D. Absolutely
    2019-03-23 20:10

    A wonderfully written book about the sorry condition in Southern Italy before the onset of WWII by an anti-fascist Italian writer, journalist, artist and doctor, Carlo Levi (1902-1975). This is the type of book that you tend to hold on to each word because the writing is so beautiful that you would not want the story to end. Adding to this is the fact that this novel or memoir was actually written as a protest to Benito "Il Duce" Mussolini's (1883-1945) government.The title refers to the what the peasants in Southern Italy say about themselves and the grimly poverty that they are experiencing. We're not Christians," they say. "Christ stopped short of here, at Eboli,"...We're not Christians, we're not human beings; we're not thought of as men but simply as beasts, beasts of burden, or even less than beasts, mere creatures of the wild." Maybe a decade ago, I used to think that everything is beautiful in Italy and all of its people are devout Catholics. What with the Vatican being there and practically every Catholic around the world would like to, sometime in his/her life, be able to visit the place. What with the beautiful tourist spots like Florence, the birthplace of Renaissance, Venice, while riding the gondolas through the canals, or Verona and see the tomb of Juliet. Then I met Italian colleagues in the company where I currently work and they said that they are Catholics but not practicing. Although they are proud of their country, they were the ones who told me the things that they were unhappy about their government and some parts of their history that they rather want to forget.Just like the Roman poet, Ovid, exiled by Emperor Augustus in Tomis (subject of David Malouf's An Imaginary Life) or Dr. Jose Rizal exiled by Spanish colonial government in Dapitan or Ninoy Aquino exiled by Marcos in Laur, Carlo Levi was also thrown by Mussolini to live in a year in Lucania at the start of Abyssinian (now called Ethiopian) War (1935). While confined in this impoverished place, Levi took up his pen and wrote this starkly beautiful account of a place beyond hope and a people abandoned by history.Beautiful account because of the glorious writing. Levi took time to describe the details of the place or the scene that reminds me of Ondaatje's The English Patient or Running In the Family. But of course, Italian Levi wrote his novel first compared to these works by this Sri Lankan-Canadian author that is one of my favorite novelists. The irony in Levi's writing was that what he described beautifully was the sad state of that poor barren malarial town: where exiles like him were thrown, where many women died during childbirth because there were not competent doctors, where people leave to America for seek for better life never to return, and so where some of the peasants think that they are not Christians but beasts.

  • Anna [Floanne]
    2019-03-29 18:05

    Una scrittura fuori dal tempo, la cui bellezza non invecchia mai.

  • Inderjit Sanghera
    2019-04-09 23:00

    The same sonorous, self-effacing style, along with a startling profundity and wisdom, is imbued in the works of Carlos Levi as with his illustrious namesake, Primo. 'Christ Stopped at Eboli' follows the exile of Carlo Levi to the remote villages of 'Grassano' and 'Gagliano' in the Italian south. Carlo captures the wretched, hopeless cadence of the peasant's lives, discarded by government, disregarded by society, their existence is punctuated by a deep sense of desolation. Not only is the book fascinating from a sociological perspective, but it is also intriguing anthropologically; the peasants are relics of a pre-Christian, pagan society and the reader can identify the various ways in which Catholicism was able to assimilate and utilse pagan rites and symbolism to spread Christianity-in many ways Christianity is just another facet of the superstitions which dominate the lives of the peasants, with its rich allegories and metaphors appealing to the peasant' superstitious and pietistic natures. Levi doesn't seek to fetishize the peasants, or portray them as simple, wholesome beings in the way that, for example, Tolstoy did; instead they are individual with their own distinct personalities and views, weighed down by their unwitting ignorance and by the hand which life has dealt them, their problems exacerbated by the parochially minded bureaucrats and state officials who  lord it over them-however, for Levi, the true subjugators were the smug and self-satisfied middle-classes, whose worship of the state and provincial nationalism, cloaked under a superficial sense of intellectual superiority, was the root cause of the rise of fascism. As well as the selfishness, ignorance and violence demonstrated by some of the peasants, Levi also brings out their every-day kindness, their unpretentious wisdom and sense of honour, painting them with sympathy, but without any sense of condescension, their lives punctuated by all to brief moments of beauty and bathos;"But the olive trees gave no shade; the sun pierced their delicate foliage as if it were I sat on the ground, the dazzling reflection of light from the clay disappeared behind the wall; the two cypresses swayed in the breeze and a cluster of roses bloomed among the graves, a strange sight in this flowerless land."That the only time the peasants would ever be close to flowers was when they died was perhaps symbolic of their place in the world. Levi was a painter and the dry, bleak and desolate surroundings are often transmogrified into something ethereal and beautiful; nights where the countryside is bathed in moon-light, everything eerie and fantastical or the little patches of green  exposed by the sunlight hidden amongst the arid expanse of clay which dominated the landscape, Levi renders the lives of the peasants with the subtle, delicate touch of a calligrapher, rather than with the pompous brush of an intellectual; his motivation is to humanise the peasants, rather than mock them and to depict the misery which life tried to enforce on them but which they largely, tried their best not to fight and reject. 

  • Buck
    2019-04-19 22:23

    I “know” Italian in the same way I “know” how to cook, throw a punch or pleasure a woman orally. Meaning, I get by, but the results are not always flattering to my self-esteem. Which is why it’s taken me three months to read the first half of Levi’s charming little memoir. And now the library wants it back. Christ stopped at Eboli; Buck stopped on page 150. We’re both slackers.I think I might love this book, though. We’ve agreed to meet at the train station in Vienna in six months.

  • Richard Newton
    2019-04-22 19:19

    A wonderful, evocative read. The description of the peasant society Levi, as a political prisoner, was exiled to live in. It can be read as a shocking reflection on poverty, exploitation and politics. But mostly it is a beautiful memoire of a culture and a people. What makes it so good is Levi never judges or belittles local beliefs. He just states them as the ways things were. He generally avoids judgement or solution apart from one short analysis towards the end of the book and his general tone towards the gentry and those in power.This is not a book that mythologises poverty, it shows it in its full awfulness - and yet at the same time one is left poignant for this society. The idea of exile is alien nowadays, and with modern technology and communications meaningless. It’s amazing to reflect that this was about 20th century Italy, not some distant medieval kingdom.

  • Ellie
    2019-03-27 19:04

    Christ Stopped at Eboli: The Story of a Year is book that is difficult to classify. It is the story, novelized but real, of author Carlo Levi, a non-practicing doctor and full-time painter who was an Italian political prisoner, sent by the fascist government in power at that time to Gagliano, a village in the poverty-stricken area of southern Italy where the peasants are starving (although taxed non-the-less) and the countryside is bleak beyond belief. Levi, a painter, renders the stark landscape vividly, so that every shade of gray, every moonscape-crater, even the different sounds of wind, stands out vividly in this land forgotten by time and progress. As the book goes on, the cumulative power of Levi's prose (strong even in translation) creates an almost unbearable, powerful world in which a pig-castration is a major event and where the lack of events are ironically measured in more words for time than Levi has known in any other dialect. The stoicism of the peasants, their children "lively, wide-awake, and sad," all pushed to the edge of the violence that comes from endless impotent suffering, presents ultimately as a dignity that is heart-wrenching while never glamorized or without the ignorance that is part of their pain.This is one of the most powerful and brilliant books I have ever read. I would like to learn to read Italian simply to be able to read it in the original. It is a passionate portrayal, rendered in vividly intense images, of an unimaginable poverty by an artist who remarks of a peasant play put on in protest of yet another restriction on their narrow lives, "Where violence and law had failed them, they had recourse to art."Another witness of which would be this book.

  • Sinem A.
    2019-03-24 00:05

    keşke Carlo Levi nin daha çok kitabı olsa Türkçe de... Uzun zamandır bu kadar gerçekçi olup da bu kadar masalsı anlatan bir yazar ile karşilaşmamıştım.. İtalya. . bize ne kadar çok benziyorsun...

  • Dhanaraj Rajan
    2019-04-20 23:27

    Let me state the verdict first: A fantastic read.This book is supposed to be a memoir. But each chapter can be read as a short story. Carlo Levi was sent to a village in the southern most tip of Italy as a political prisoner in the years 1935 - 1936. His crime was being against the Fascist regime. Being a man from North Italy (Turin) the life in the south Italy was a different experience. And later he narrated his life in south Italy in writing and that has become a masterpiece. And I too agree on that.How could it become a masterpiece?1. The language: It is a lyrical language and the expressions are fantastic. The language speaks directly to the heart and senses. As you read you realise that you are in the midst of the peasants of the south Italy and you experience their life in every aspect. 2. But then language alone is not enough to make it a masterpiece. This book is supposed to be a revelation. The division of South and North in the same country has more in the store to offer. The south is poor and the north is rich. They both represented different civilisations. The north Italians never had the idea of the life in the south Italy. So it was an introduction of a new civilisation. New civilisation always interests us. And what else it is written so well. In Italy also this book was a huge success (Italians were reading about Italians as persons of other civilisation).3. And what is required for the introduction of a civilisation is in abundance. The anthropological elements, socio-cultural beliefs, traditional art forms, legends, traditional medical practice, folk festivals, etc abound in this book. Reading them is a pure joy. But then besides the joy of reading you realise the stark reality. And that is the success of this book. Of course, there is a criticism that the peasants were portrayed always in the negative manner by Carlo Levi. But then to me it was all the more a revelation that spoke of the divisions that existed in the society.It is a book not to be missed.

  • Elizabeth
    2019-04-13 01:04

    I think this might be the perfect memoir. Soulful, poetic, and in the end so rarely about the author himself. With an anthropological eye he examines the many facets of the "exotic" land to which he has been exiled--southern Italy in 1935: preChristian, he calls it, feudal. Caveat: There is much to discuss and argue about in this book, not the least of which is his pronouncement of his Gramscian political solutions to the endemic poverty he discovers in Lucania, in the second to last chapter of the book. Also worth hearty back-and-forth is his animal-like portrayal of the "pagan" culture of the South, and the role of Christianity as a normalizer given Levi's Jewish heritage, and of course some misogyny. Even still, though, I find this book to be a model of beautiful nonfiction in its attempt to deeply understand a culture from the multiple points of view of political systems, sexuality, codes of neighborliness, landscape, memory, mythology, folklore, medicine. Or maybe it's just about voice. This book is so beautiful. (And in it you will discover the genesis of the term "abracadabra"--worth it just for that!)

  • Bfisher
    2019-04-12 17:22

    I had been meaning to read this book ever since I read Paul Theroux's The Pillars of Hercules about twenty years ago, where Theroux described his visit to the village where Levi had been exiled, and which Levi had memorialized in Christ Stopped At Eboli.This is a wonderful story of how often so little really changes in the countryside, especially the relationships between the peasants and their would-be rulers. It also has quite a bit to say about the often pointless oppressions of the modern state and its minions.

  • Frahorus
    2019-04-19 22:14

    L'intellettuale torinese Carlo Levi, convinto antifascista, viene messo al confino in Lucania. Siamo nel 1935. Qui, nel paese di Aliano, scoprirà l'umanità contadina del mezzogiorno, vivrà con una popolazione da sempre vissuta ai margini della storia, dimenticata e rimasta sepolta per millenni sotto il peso dell'ingiustizia sociale e dell'indifferenza politica."- Noi non siamo cristiani, - essi dicono, - Cristo si è fermato a Eboli - . Cristiano vuol dire, nel loro linguaggio, uomo... [...] Noi non siamo cristiani, non siamo uomini, non siamo considerati come uomini, ma bestie, bestie da soma..."Questo libro racconta, come in un viaggio al principio del tempo, la scoperta di una diversa civiltà. E' quella dei contadini del Mezzogiorno: fuori della Storia e della Ragione progressiva, antichissima sapienza e paziente dolore. Vi si esprime una visione complessa, nella quale gli infiniti punti di vista sono legati assieme, riuniti nel consenso delle cose. Il lettore può trovarvi insieme una ragione di poesia, un modo di linguaggio, uno specchio dell'anima, e la chiave di problemi storici, economici, politici e sociali altrimenti incomprensibili. Un libro che tocca il cuore, che ci fa comprendere la reale percezione delle cose, dei rapporti umani, dello scorrere del tempo.Capolavoro di umanità. Ecco come definirei in poche parole questa straordinaria opera autobiografica di Carlo Levi. Nel 1935 Levi, medico, pittore e intellettuale, viene mandato al confino in Lucania, prima a Grassano, poi a Gagliano. Vi rimarrà per circa un anno. Il libro, pubblicato nel 1945, è il poetico resoconto di questo periodo della sua vita e rappresenta una delle più importanti e coinvolgenti testimonianze sulle condizioni del Meridione nella prima metà del Novecento. Levi narra i suoi casi e l'incontro con questa "gente mite, rassegnata e passiva, impenetrabile alle ragioni della politica e alle teorie dei partiti", usando la prima persona. Lo fa col distacco scientifico di un competente etnologo che ci descriva in maniera esauriente gli usi e costumi di una popolazione ignota e le necessarie partecipazione e simpatia emotive del narratore e dell'uomo di cultura. La fanno da padrone miseria, arretratezza, diffidenza verso lo straniero, solitudine. Gagliano, Grassano, la Lucania appare agli occhi dei lettori come una terra dimenticata, remota, sconosciuta. Cristo si è fermato a Eboli ebbe subito un grande successo conseguendo fama in tutto il mondo. Nel 1979 Francesco Rosi diresse l’omonimo film interpretato da Gian Maria Volontè, Irene Papas, Alan Cuny, Lea Massari e Paolo Bonacelli. La terra lucana di confine e l’antica civiltà contadina fu affidata alla fotografia del Premio Oscar Pasqualino De Santis. Secondo le sue ultime volontà Carlo Levi riposa nel cimitero di Aliano, lo stesso nel quale durante il periodo del confino si vedeva dipingere in compagnia del cavalletto e dei colori. “Sono passati molti anni, pieni di guerra, e di quello che si usa chiamare la Storia. Spinto qua e là alla ventura, non ho potuto finora mantenere la promessa fatta, lasciandoli, ai miei contadini, tornare fra loro, e non so davvero se e quando potrò mai mantenerla”.

  • Andrei Tamaş
    2019-03-29 19:01

    Descrierea exilului unui doctor în timpul Italiei fasciste. Narațiune la persoana I. Dialogul lipsește aproape cu desăvârșire, fiind deci o confesiune lăuntrică. Din această confesiune nu se înțelege însă caracterul anti-fascist al naratorului (căci mă gândesc că așa ar trebui să fie). Conchid că nu vrea să ofere cititorului decât o morală conform căreia nu te poți împotrivi niciunui regim politic totalitar, fiind nevoit să îl accepți și -ca remediu- să admiri frumusețea rustica a naturii, asta fiind ceva cu care nu pot fi de acord.

  • Gattalucy
    2019-03-30 21:15

    Mai così lontani dallo statoDopo aver letto “Furore” e le vicissitudini della massa dei piccoli proprietari terrieri mandati in miseria dal nuovo latifondo negli stato uniti degli anni '30, un'amica anobiana mi aveva consigliato di rileggermi “Cristo si è fermato ad Eboli” per fare il confronto coi cafoni del nostro meridione.Così, rileggendolo 40 anno dopo, ho maledetto la scuola, che mi costrinse allora a leggere questo libro bellissimo così in fretta e furia, oppressa dai ritmi di interrogazioni pressanti, obbligata a trarne giudizi e argomentazioni tanto frettolose quanto insipide. E ho capito perchè è stato un libro letto in moltissime linge, per l'universalità del suo linguaggio, e della sua denuncia, comprensibile in Cina quanto nelle campagne della Bolivia.Carlo Levi lo scrisse nel '43, ancora in piena guerra, forse per fermare i ricordi del suo confino in terra di Lucania, la dove perfino Cristo non era arrivato, e neanche lo Stato, ne la civiltà , né la scienza, oppressa ancora allora dalla malaria, dall'ignoranza, e dalla miseria.Ma ciò che si apprezza nel libro è la capacità unica di entrare nel mondo e nella civiltà contadina, e quella del meridione lo era in modo diverso da quella delle fertili pianure del nord, assolutamente priva di superiorità, svestendosi dei preconcetti e degli stereotipi del cittadino evoluto e istruito, per concedere ai contadini di quelle terre desolate un'aura di mitologica arcaica dignità. Evita di guardarli con irriguardosa supremazia riconoscendo in loro i diritti negati, le ingiustizie subite, la cronica distanza che li separa dallo Stato, sia esso fascista, liberale o socialista, o qualsiasi forma futura di Stato che verrà, perchè in esso la società contadina non potrà mai riconoscersi.E denuncia il vero cancro del meridione:la piccola borghesia dei paesi, classe degenerata, fisicamente e moralmente, incapace di adempiere la sua funzione, e che solo vive di piccole rapine e della tradizione imbastardita di un diritto feudale. E il tutto condito con una poetica e un linguaggio semplice e nel contempo perfetto:La fossa... è piena di ombre, e l'ombra avvolge i monti viola e neri che stringono d'ognintorno l'orizzonte. Brillano le prime stelle, scintillano di là dall'Agri i lumi di Sant'Arcangelo, e più lontano, appena visibili,quelli di qualche altro paese ignoto, Noepoli forse, o Senise... La strada è stretta, sulle porte stanno seduti i contadini, nel buio che sale....Un brusio indistinto mi gira attorno in grandi cerchi, e di là c'è un profondo silenzio. Mi par d'essere caduto dal cielo, come una pietra, in uno stagno.Nessun testo che lessi in seguito per comprendere “La questione meridionale” fu mai così illuminante, e niente così ancora insopportabilmente attuale.Non ci siamo mossi molto da là.E chi, preso dai rigurgiti della società attuale e dalla crisi economica sogna di ritornare alla terra, farebbe bene a leggerselo, perchè sia chiaro a tutti che lo Stato e la civiltà contadina sono in lotta da secoli, che dobbiamo ripensare ai fondamenti stessi dell'idea di Stato, al concetto di individuo che ne è la base; e al tradizionale concetto giuridico e astratto di individuo, dobbiamo sostituire un nuovo concetto, che abolisca la invalicabile trascendenza di individuo e Stato....Questo capovolgimento della politica che va inconsapevolmente maturando, è implicito nella civiltà contadina, ed è l'unica strada che ci permetterà di uscire dal giro vizioso di fascismo e antifascismo. Questa strada si chiama autonomia: lo Stato non può essere che l'insieme di infinite autonomie, un'organica federazione di comuni rurali autonomiBeh....questa notte, dopo aver sentito le ultime notizie dall'ermo colle del Quirinale, che mi sciorinavano nomi improbabili di improponibili commissioni, mi sono sentita come i contadini di Lucania, e come loro, assitita, o annientata, da una pazienza infinita, mi sono sentita lontano anni luce da uno Stato che nulla sa di me.

  • Ahmad Sharabiani
    2019-04-22 20:02

    569. Christ Stopped at Eboli – Carlo Leviآنها می‌گویند: «ما مسیحی نیستم. مسیح در ابولی متوقف ماند.» مسیحی در زبان آنها یعنی آدم. و جمله ضرب‌المثل‌گونه‌ای را که بارها شنیده‌ام تکرار می‌کنند که شاید چیزی بیش از بیان یک احساس ناامیدانه ناشی از حقارت نیست. «ما مسیحی نیستم، آدم نیستم، آدم به حساب نیامدیم، بلکه حیوان، حیوان بارکش و حتی بدتر از حیواناتیم.» لوی در این کتاب با زبانی روان و گاه طنزآمیز به شیوه خاطره‌نگاری و با جهش‌های زمانی بدون تقدم و تاخر وقایع، داستان خود را به پیش می‌برد و فضای نه چندان بانشاط روستای عقب مانده را به شیوایی و با جذابیت وصف می‌کند. از این اثر، اقتباس سینمایی معروفی نیز انجام گرفته که در کشور ما با عنوان «مسیح هرگز به ابولی نیامد» یا «دیار فراموش شده» به نمایش درآمد

  • Vanni Santoni
    2019-04-19 22:26

    ecco un altro libro che al liceo avevo schivato accuratamente reputandolo una palla e ovviamente mi sbagliavo di grosso. Si tratta di un capolavoro clamoroso (e per nulla palloso), inutile spendere altre parole...

  • Emily
    2019-04-15 19:10

    Συλλεκτικό, αγαπημένο βιβλίο με εξαιρετική μετάφραση από τη Ρίτα Μπούμη Παππά.Αναγνωστική απόλαυση.

  • Douglas Dalrymple
    2019-03-24 21:22

    In addition to being superbly well written (and translated), Carlo Levi’s book succeeds in achieving what only the best non-fiction does: it educates your feeling for human possibilities and expands your capacity for wonder. Levi says that he was tutored by his housekeeper in peasant magic while exiled in Lucania; I think this book is proof that he gained considerable proficiency.

  • Moshtagh ghurdarvazi
    2019-03-31 21:14

    کتاب مسیح هرگز به اینجا نرید یا میح در ابولی متوقف مان کتابیت راوی گونه از اقامت تقریبا دو ساله ی یک پزشک و نقاش و روشنفکر و مبارز ضد فاشیست در تبعیدکتاب ماجراهای مردم بخشی ک شخص نقاش در ان بسر میبرد را نقل میکند و به زیبایی و شیوایی مردم ساده دل روستا را به تصویر میکشد مردمی روستایی ساده مصیبت زده و تحت سلطه نظام فئودالی و بورژوازی دهه 20 و 30 ایتالیا در فصول پایانی کتاب شاهد راهکارهایی هستیم که شخص نویسنده انهارا راهکارهایی برای نجات از فاشیست میداندنکته حائز اهمیت نگاه تیز بین و طنز لطیف و دقیق نویسندگان ایتالیاییست که در این کتاب به زیبایی نمودار شده ب مثابه انچه ما در اثار کالوینو و بوتزاتی مشاهده میکنیم.در کل کتاب خوبیه و ترجمشم ب غایت خوبه و روان

  • Cemressa
    2019-03-26 20:27

    "İsa Bu Köye Uğramadı" adıyla Türkçe'ye çevrilen harika bir köy anlatısı olmuş. Tıpkı köylerde zamanın ağır ağır aktığı gibi ağır okunan bir kitap oldu. Kitap İtalya'nın yokluk ve hastalıkla kuşatılmış bir köyünde kilise-halk, devlet-vatandaş, köylü-politikacı, doğa-insan ilişkisini bir siyasi sürgünün gözünden anlatıyor. Bu kitabı bana öneren Goodreads uygulaması on ikiden vurmuş diyebilirim.

  • LauraT
    2019-04-12 00:04

    Capolavoro assoluto della letteratura Italiana, non capisco come si potesse pensare - quend'erme giovani! - di farlo leggere ai ragazzi delle medie. E' di un tale spessore che ci vogliono anni di letture per apprezzarlo - e non credo di averlo neanche fatto a pieno ...

  • Kevin Tole
    2019-04-21 21:26

    A little gem. Beautifully written. Poetry, autobiography, travelogue, political and social observation. You have to remember that even as late as 1936 Italy, in particular the south, was little beyond a feudal state. The ramifications of 'nationhood' hardly touched the peasant way of life which pervades this autobiographical sketch by Carlo Levi. You also need to realise the ravages of disease, particularly malaria, in a countryside where doctors were infrequent and medicines in short supply and expensive. Witchcraft and the memory of brigands, no more than highway robbers and bandits like Mexican gangs and nightriders, were only just dissimilated. The prevalence of 'witches' and 'wizards' and the belief in brigands that were local heroes however was maintained in the villages. The small-minded mid-level bureaucracy of Fascism was what affected the peasants themselves more than overriding central control of party Fascism. Everything of minor importance was referred to Matera, itself little more than a collection of people living in hovels. And at ground level petty incompetent officials imposed their will and used their office to maintain their superiority and pursue their own ends for self gain.This is a wonderfully written book and a must for all those travelling in southern Italy.

  • Elenapetulia
    2019-04-17 21:27

    "questa fraternità passiva, questo patire insieme, questa rassegnata, solidale, secolare pazienza è il profondo sentimento comune dei contadini, legame non religioso, ma naturale. Essi non hanno, ne' possono avere, quello che si usa chiamare coscienza politica perché sono, in tutti sensi del termine, pagani, non cittadini: gli dei dello Stato e della città non possono avere spazio culto tra queste argille dove regna il lupo e l'antico, nero cinghiale, né alcun moro separa il mondo degli uomini da quello degli animali e degli spiriti, ne' le fronde degli alberi visibili delle oscure radici sotterranei". La Basilicata per me e' casa. Dolorosa, silenziosa, meravigliosa. E Levi un uomo straordinario.

  • Fede
    2019-03-31 21:14

    Crudo e magico ritratto della Lucania nella sua arretratezza e solitudine ma anche orgogliosa fierezza sullo sfondo della dittatura fascista e della guerra di Etiopia, il tutto reso ancora più valente dal racconto in prima persona dell'autore, protagonista dei fatti narrati. C. Levi incanta non solo con la descrizione dei paesaggi della Basilicata ma anche nel delineare e nel dare spicco a questi protagonisti della vita del comune di Gagliano, anonimi ma allo stesso tempo definiti e peculiari.Davvero una bella lettura, molto consigliata.

  • Richard
    2019-04-10 21:59

    A wise, sympathetic, beautifully written (and excellently translated) account of a year spent in forced exile in poverty-stricken southern Italy. Levi's prose is poetic and gently ironic, but never haughty or pretentious. His descriptions of the pagan, animistic worldview of the peasants are among the best things I've read in recent memory.

  • dehorsmaisdedans
    2019-04-18 23:21

    Nel suo patito esilio antifascista, Levi si affaccia, costretto, agli ultimi, quelli e quelle che vivono dehors du temps, che era (è?) nazionalizzazione, patriottismo, burocrazia, potere (meschino), benessere economico e statura sociale. Con questi e queste diseredate del meridione Levi vive, convive, condivide e, se non se convince, tuttavia inevitabilmente le compenetra. Il risultato è un ritratto a tratti distaccato e scioccato, ma schietto, umile, persino addolorato: c'è la compassione che non cede al giudizio, la comprensione che sgorga dall'esperire, lo sguardo limpido di uno scrittore lirico votato a fare dell'altrui miseria il testamento di un commovente vivere collettivo che scandalizza, e accusa, a leggerlo oggi, il barbaro (questo sì) individualismo che sembra intessere la nostra, di alienazione. "Questa fraternità passiva, questo patire insieme, questa rassegnata, solidale, secolare pazienza è il profondo sentimento comune dei contadini, legame non religioso, ma naturale. Essi non hanno, né possono avere, quella che si usa chiamare coscienza politica, perché sono, in tutti i sensi del termine, pagani, non cittadini: gli dei dello Stato e della città non possono aver culto fra queste argille... Ma in essi è vivo il senso umano di un comune destino, e di una comune accettazione. E' un senso, non un atto di coscienza; non si esprime in discorsi o in parole, ma si porta con sé in tutti i momenti, in tutti i gesti della vita, in tutti i giorni uguali che si stendono su questi deserti... La vita non può essere, verso la sorte, che pazienza e silenzio. A che cosa valgono le parole? E che cosa si può fare? Niente."