Monday, February 18, 2008

Italy's Agony and Ecstasy

This week's Newsweek International cover story written with Jacopo Barigazzi in Milan and Barbie Nadeau in Rome is about what went wrong with Italy, and what's still right with it.

The full text was translated into Italian by La Repubblica in its print edition on Monday, February 18, but the only extended version I could find on line (and it's not the whole thing) is at Clandestinoweb: "Caos Calmo."

I think it's pretty clear we all love Italy, for all of its faults, and sometimes because of them.

One point of irritation writing the story, however, was that none of the right-wing politicians, commentators or businessmen we approached seemed able to find the time -- over the course of a month -- to give us interviews. At the top of that list would be Gianfranco Fini, who was perfectly pleasant, but just didn't have ten minutes to spare. We also approached Giuliano Ferrara, who is a wonderfully agile thinker and writer close to Berlusconi, but, again, he just couldn't be bothered. -- C.D.

This viral video by Bruno Bozzetto has been around for a decade, but Jacopo's article about it, and the video itself, are not to be missed. Just click on the picture below, then click on "Play":

Recent articles:

The latest:

Newsweek Internatonal Cover: Agony And The Ecstasy, 17 February 2008
Italy barely functions. Yet its people are happy. What explains this? (With Jacopo Barigazzi and Barbie Nadeau)

Also see, Italy: the Viral Video, by Jacopo Barigazzi, 15 February 2008.

Earlier pieces:

Newsweek International Roundtable: 'A Good Anchor,' 11 February 2008
Turkey's top tycoons speak out on ties to Europe, headscarves, the military and other controversies.

OnFaith: Low Motives and Higher Laws 1 February 2008
Once you can claim that a critical press is on the wrong side of God's law, after all, you can do just about anything you want to shut it down. That's not only a problem for Afghanistan or for Islam. I think that's a danger in any country where politicians claim they answer to a higher law.

Shadowland: The End-of-the-World Economic Forum 30 January 2008
In this great age of denial, Davos may seem out of touch, but the Bush administration is so much worse.

Shadowland: Of Cops and Candidates 11 January 2008
America still faces clear and present dangers. So why are the presidential debates about national security increasingly detached from reality? (There is also a video shot in New York -- "NYPD Unseen" -- linked to the article.)

Newsweek Issues 2008: The Ghost In The Machine 28 December 2007
Don't blame America. Cultural remix has been around since Roman times. It just happens a lot faster today.
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