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Pier Paolo Pasolini: La rabbia /Anger

Monday 16 January, 6.30pm

Tenement Press presents Pier Paolo Pasolini’s La rabbia /Anger

Celebrating the first English language translation of Pier Paolo Pasolini’s La rabbia / Anger in a new edition by Tenement Press, join us for an evening of readings with translator, Cristina Viti.

Why is our life dominated by discontent, by anguish, by the fear of war, by war? In order to answer this question I have written La rabbia, not following a chronological or perhaps even a logical thread, but only my political reasons and my poetic sense.

—Pier Paolo Pasolini

Written in response to producer Gastone Ferranti’s request for his comments on a set of newsreel items, the poet would respond with a montage of his own. Via the unfolding of a chrysalis of images, in La rabbia (1963), Pasolini’s lens pans over Soviet repression in Hungary; the Cuban revolution; (the utopian object of) space exploration; political imprisonment in Algeria; the liberation of the former European colonies; the election of Pope John xxiii; the prospect of revolution in Africa and the Middle East; in Europe and in Latin America… Here, we’ve a panoply of photorealist intimations. The death of Marilyn Monroe crests as an idea in this tidal pooling of reflections, as the poet’s line lights out for conceptual rhymes and counterpoints. In Viti’s translation, the weave of prose and poetry that forms La rabbia portrays the vitality of Pasolini’s work in its capacity to speak to both the specifics of his contexts, the character of our own present tense, and the ironic fact of a life lived against the gulf of discontent in its myriad forms. Here, we’ve a startling confrontation of a revolutionary struggle in stasis set in lines that crystallise in a rallying call against blindness.


Cristina Viti’s publications include the Selected Poems of Dino Campana with the full text of the Orphic Songs, collections by Etel Adnan, Mariangela Gualtieri and Anna Gréki, as well as Elsa Morante’s The Worlds Saved by Kids, shortlisted for the John Florio Prize. Translations for the theatre include Orson Welles’ Moby Dick—Rehearsed for the Teatro dell’Elfo in Milan. Among forthcoming books are translations of the Selected Poems of Luigi Di Ruscio and of Luca Rastello’s The Rain’s Falling Up, a novel exploring the politics and spirit of 1970s Italy.