Annually – Life and works of Beppe Fenoglio
  • Wed 13 December 2023
Biblioteca Istituto Vespucci-Colombo,
piazza Vigo

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Annually – Life and works of Beppe Fenoglio

Wednesday, December 13th, 3:15 PM, Vespucci-Colombo Institute Library, Vigo Square AUTUMNALLY Life and works of Beppe Fenoglio Edited by Michele Cecchin

The meetings promoted by the Library of the Vespucci-Colombo Institute continue. The last appointment of 2023 does not concern the presentation of a book but is dedicated to one of the most important authors of the 20th century. On Wednesday, December 13th at 15:15, at the premises of the Library located on the ground floor of the headquarters in Piazza Vigo, Michele Cecchini will hold a meeting entitled “AUTUNNALMENTE – Life and Works of Beppe Fenoglio”. Admission is free and open to everyone. The event, organized by the Library of the Institute in collaboration with Erasmo Libri, is configured as a small space for the deepening of the figure and works of the writer from Alba.

Michele Cecchini will try to illustrate the contents and typical themes of Fenoglio – life in the Langhe, the Resistance – and the peculiarities of his writing, characterized by intense linguistic experimentation. Particular attention will be given to his secluded figure as a writer and scholar passionate about English language and literature.

Fenoglio’s own testimonies about his writing activity lend themselves to considerations and insights. This is how he described motivations and methods: “I write for countless reasons. Certainly not for entertainment. It’s a lot of hard work. The easiest of my pages comes out carefree after a dozen painful revisions.”

Beppe Fenoglio (Alba, March 1, 1922 – Turin, February 18, 1963) remained in Alba all his life, dividing his time between a job at a wine company and writing. As for his own biographical story, he summarized it in a letter to Italo Calvino: “As for the biographical data, it’s a detail that I can handle quickly. Born thirty years ago in Alba – student (Gymnasium – High School, then University, but of course I didn’t graduate) soldier in the Royal Army and then partisan: today, unfortunately, one of the agents of a well-known wine company. I believe that’s all.”

In his lifetime, Fenoglio saw only three volumes published, two by Einaudi and one by Garzanti. He died prematurely, at the age of 41. Posthumous success came, especially thanks to the two masterpieces: “A Private Matter” and “The Partisan Johnny”. In particular, the latter, which remained unfinished, is the protagonist of one of the most complicated and controversial editorial stories.

The curator of the meeting recommends bringing with you the volumes of Fenoglio’s works (if desired, you can also consult and borrow those from the library) to do shared readings and to follow more carefully the various passages under examination.

“On the tombstones, my name will be enough for me, the two dates that matter,”

“and the qualification of writer and partisan.”

(from “The twenty-three days of the city of Alba”)

Michele Cecchini, born in Lucca in 1972, has lived in Livorno for many years, where he teaches literary subjects at the Vespucci-Colombo Institute. He has published novels for Bollati Boringhieri: “A Sudden Bite” (2023), “And This is Nothing” (2021), “The Sky Last” (2019).

Annually – Life and works of Beppe Fenoglio
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