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Focus on Primo Levi for the International Holocaust Remembrance Day



Focus on Primo Levi for the International Holocaust Remembrance Day

On the occasion of the International Holocaust Remembrance Day 2019, Prof. Mario Barenghi from the University of Milan-Bicocca will hold two lectures on the life and work of Primo Levi, whose birth centenary is celebrated in 2019, titled Bearing witness: Primo Levi and the memory of the Holocaust. The two lectures will be held on January 29 at 19:00 at the Durban Holocaust & Genocide Centre (44 KE Masinga Road, Durban) and January 31 at 19:00 at the Johannesburg Holocaust & Genocide Centre (1 Duncombe Road, Forest Town, Johannesburg).
In the context of Holocaust studies, Primo Levi's work - whose centenary from birth is celebrated this year - appears to be more necessary and inescapable than ever: not because it contains more information than other memories of concentration camps, but because it appears supported from the very beginning by a remarkably lucid awareness of the difficulties that the project of witnessing an extreme, overwhelming, historically unheard-of experience implied. From the comparison between If this is a man (1947) and The drowned and the saved (1986) emerge, on one side, the extraordinary acumen of Levi in analysing human behaviours, on the other side the impossibility of having the last word on the Holocaust, whose distinctive characteristic remains, in addition to the terrible brutality, its dizzying absurdity.
Mario Barenghi (Milan 1956) is full professor of contemporary Italian literature at the University of Milan-Bicocca. His work focusses on Manzoni, Ungaretti, Calvino, literary theory, memorials, and on various aspects and figures of the narrative of the last two centuries. He is Director of the "Annali Manzoniani" (third series), writes in the online magazine "Doppiozero" and has participated from its constitution to the Tirature yearbook of literature and publishing. On Primo Levi he published, among others, the bilingual Italian/English essay titled Perché crediamo a Primo Levi? / Why Do We Believe in Primo Levi?, Einaudi 2013.

Durban Poster

Johannesburg Poster


Date: Da Tuesday, January 29, 2019 a Thursday, January 31, 2019

Organized by : Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Pretoria, Consolato Generale d'Italia a Johannesburg, Società Dante Alighieri di Durban, South African Holocaust and Genocide Foundation

Entrance : Free