By Donna Leon
Commissario Guido Brunetti of the Venice Questura is stunned to listen to that Brett Lynch, a chum seeing that a homicide case at l. a. Fenice, has suffered a savage beating. The assault, within the appealing palazzo domestic of Flavia Petrelli, reigning diva of l. a. Scala, had include a message: 'Don't continue that appointment with Dottor Semenzato.' Then, with the typhoon clouds accumulating quick over the town, a man's physique is located ...
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When I look back at the history of Italy as I have lived it, I find nothing that convinces me that to have situated myself here in this second Italy, in this radical, fundamental break, is mistaken. In fact, in all my experience I find nothing but a constant affirmation of the continuity of this ambiguous relation of rupture with my country. In my early childhood, I found myself face to face with fascism. Then, I found myself facing the ferocious restoration of a harsh capitalist system. This, moreover, occurred after a civil war, after the defeat of the enemy in the civil war, and after the defeat of the civil war itself and of all it had represented: communism in Italy, this vast movement that had, in fact, been a movement of hope.
He subsequently reads history in terms of the consequences of this fateful fail- The Myth of Backward Italy in Modern Europe I 27 ure. A British reader cannot but see an implicit comparison between this diagnosis and the typical British reading of what happened in Britain during the same period and its consequences for postwar Britain; the "corrective" reforms of the first postwar Labour government marked a clear watershed with the past and the beginnings of the modern welfare state. Yet, in spite of the road taken, by the 19808 the "nationalization" of values taken for granted for the case of postwar Britain has finally captured even the most recalcitrant of Italians, though Ginsberg is doubtful as to its permanence.
Ferrera, Maurizio. 1987. , La societa italiana degli anni ottanta. Bari: Laterza. Forgacs, David. 1990. Italian Culture in the Industrial Era, 1880-1980: Cultural Industries, Politics and the Public. Manchester: Manchester University Press. Gallino, Luciano. 1987. Delia ingovernabilita: La societa italiana tra premoderna e neo-industriale. Milan: Comunita. Ginsborg, Paul. 1989. Storia d'ltalia dal dopoguerra a oggi. Societa e politica 1943-88. Turin: Einaudi. 1990. A History of Contemporary Italy: Society and Politics, 1943-1988.