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Saviano, Scurati not on guest list at Frankfurt Book Fair

Saviano, Scurati not on guest list at Frankfurt Book Fair

'Decided to give space to those who haven't had it' says Mazza

ROME, 28 May 2024, 15:53

ANSA English Desk



Left-leaning authors Roberto Saviano and Antonio Scurati, victims of alleged government censorship on state TV recently, are not on the list of 100 Italian authors attending October's Frankfurt Book Fair where Italy is special guest this year, the government's pointman for the event, conservative journalist Mauro Mazza, said Tuesday.
    Gomorrah author Saviano had a show on the mafia pulled by state broadcaster Rai after the rightwing government took over in autumn 2022 and Scurati had a monologue on Premier Giorgia Meloni's alleged failure to reckon with her neofascist past pulled on Liberation Day recently.
    Mazza said, however, that it was not a question of discrimination but a desire to "give space to authors who have not had it in the past".
    He suggested that both authors might be invited by German publishers to the October 16-20 fair.
    Saviano has had to go into police protection after Camorra death threats after his 2006 bestseller Gomorra, which later spawned a Cannes award winning film and a hit TV series.
    He was successfully sued by Meloni for calling her a "bastard" over migrant children's deaths amid her fierce anti-migrant rhetoric while in opposition in 2020.
    Scurati, the author of an acclaimed biography of Mussolini, was set to deliver a monologue on Rai marking the day Italy celebrates its liberation from Fascism and Nazism on April 25, but the monologue was pulled after he tacked on an analysis of Meloni's "post-Fascist" party and its alleged inability to come to terms with its neo-Fascist predecessors, having failed to remove the Mussolini flame from its logo.
    Rai denied censorship and said the last-minute decision was due to Scurati's overly steep fee.
    Meloni published the monologue, in its entirety, on her social media platforms.
    photo: Saviano


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