Myth, Symbolism and Identity in Postcolonial Italy and Libya
Chapter 1: Memory in Postcolonial Italy: Myth, Amnesia, Censorship
← 28 | 29 → Chapter 1: Memory in Postcolonial Italy: Myth, Amnesia, Censorship
This Chapter illustrates how, for a very long time in postcolonial Italy, memory of the colonial experience was mostly absent from popular culture as a result of political and media manipulation, and how Italian collective memory was affected by myth, amnesia and censorship. A brief historical background on Italian Colonialism shows, in fact, the reasons behind the diffusion of the myth of Italiani, Brava Gente (Italians, Good People) and its fundamental role in the formation of a collective memory aimed at removing uncomfortable events of the past, and distancing itself from historical responsibilities. One of the most diffused assumptions in contemporary Italy, for instance, is that although Italians did colonise Africa, they never were real colonisers and even accredited journalists like Enzo Biagi referred to Italy’s colonizing experience as an adventure,24 somehow romanticising an event that, in reality, was an act of invasion and aggression.
Mario Tobino’s novel The Deserts of Libya and Mario Monicelli’s film The Desert Roses, provide ideal case studies to show how postcolonial literature and cinema, over a period spanning more than half a century, have treated the subject of the Italian occupation of Libya, reinforcing the myth of the Good People. The case of Lion of the Desert is also examined at the end of Chapter 1, with an emphasis on the dual role of this film in staging a postcolonial memory both in Italy and in Libya. On...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.