The play consists of seven stories of violence against women, all true testimonies collected by Amnesty International from around the world.
Catherine Javaloyes and in Spain by the company Crit, directed by Maraini herself and with the extraordinary participation of Rosana Pastor. It narrates a voyage from the Shoah to Budapest, in , the year of the revolution. Compiled by Alex Standen Birmingham. Tracy Barrett] in Diacritics, Vol. Oxford : Berghahn, , pp. Roberto Bertoni Turin: Trauben edizioni, , pp. Anne E. Brown and Marjanne E. Santo L. Skip to main content Skip to main menu. Google Tag Manager. Dacia Maraini Biography Dacia Maraini The daughter of well-known ethnologist Fosco Maraini, Dacia Maraini was born in and spent her early childhood in Japan while her father conducted his research.
In this respect, there is a substantial convergence between the ideals defended by Elena and those of Protestant women of similar social extraction, active in Italy in education and social aid in the second half of nineteenth century. Besides Giulia Salis, born Jewish but converted to the Unitarian English Church, the Swiss Matilde Calandrini should be mentioned, with her kindergartens in Tuscany, and the American Emily Gould who in founded in Rome the Italo-American schools for poor children and orphans.
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At this point, we may hazard the opinion that although our heroine's pedagogical sensibilities and philanthropic drive were shared by many women of her social stratum, autonomy of action and radical reasoning mark her as distinct from her Italian contemporaries. Throuh the archives of different prominent members of the Raffalovich dynasty, it is possible to follow its vicissitudes over at least five generations. That Raffalovich ancestors were Iberian conversos escaping the Inquisition who found refuge in Sweden and then came to Russia in the path of Charles XII, 93 is a tale caught in legend relying only on the presence of a swallow flying over the seas in the family arms.
According to a tradition bequeathed by the Hassidic branch of the family, the first to bear this surname was Moshe Parnes, son of Rafael, ship builder for the Russian army, when in during a visit of Catherine the Great, the empress would have bestowed upon him his patronymic Raffalovich, replacing the surname Parnes that was used till then. Although most of these first-generation Raffalovichs had some degree of familiarity with the Russian language and culture, something quite unusual among the Jews of the Pale of Settlement at the turn of the century, only the branch established in Odessa became rapidly estranged from traditional ways of life.
Those living in smaller localities of the interior, such as Bogopol, remained attached to the Lubavitch Hassidic movement till the beginning of the twentieth century. Three of these children died in their infancy and one, Mark , perished in his early twenties while swimming in the Dniestr. Olga was related to the famous maskil Isaac Baer Levinsohn and belonged to an illustrious line of rabbis.
This is in line with the well-known endogamic practice among the Jewish mercantile elite, in Russia and elsewhere, intended to preserve intact the family endowment. The latter was an impressive matron, tiny but with an iron will. When she saw the sweet baby she exclamaid: here is the wife of Grish, her youngest son, who was four]. Consequently, their freedom to find a partner outside the inner circle of close relatives was more limited. Moritz Askenasy , member of the Imperial Council of Odessa and later moved to Dresden, while her sister Anne Chalina married in Heinrich Toeplitz Warsaw Wroclaw , director of the railroad of Southern Russia and founder of the Polish Handlowy Bank Although both men were wealthy Jews, they did not belong to the circle of close relatives.
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To find the earliest examples of total estrangement from Judaism among male representatives of the family, we have to look to those who did not seek a commercial career. Arthur Odessa St. Petersburg , perhaps the most famous among the sons of Abraham Raffalovich, is taken by Steven Zipperstein as the model of assimilatory desire that begins to gain a foothold among prosperous Jews of his generation:. After attending the Richelieu Lyceum, the most prestigious school in Odessa, Arthur studied medicine in Prague, Berlin and Tartu, graduating in obstetrics and surgery and becoming a leading physician in Odessa on tuberculosis and plagues.
In Arthur converted to Russian orthodoxy and changed his name to Artemi Alexievich, the first of the many conversions in the following years, when as for many Jews in Western Europe, social and geographical mobility had eroded the fundaments of traditional Jewish practice. In this faith will be raised their seven sons, who will continue to steer the destinies of the Raffalovich bank consortium till its bankruptcy in These first conversions and the geographical dispersion of the Raffalovich family, whose traces can be found in the main European capitals from the second half of the nineteenth century on, did not appreciably affect the Raffalovich and Lowensohn the coherence of their familial structure.
With it disappears every residual attachment to Judaism. The matrimonial strategies of the second generation after Abraham Raffalovich seem to have been dictated by social ascent and intellectual ambition in a non-Jewish milieu. Elle resta juive. She did not want to separate from her husband as her mother did not want to cease being Jewish in order not to grief the mother she loved so much and she felt so close to even after death had separated them].
Marie published vehement articles in the French journal Le Temps criticizing the rise of the anti-Semitic movement within Russian society during the late s, but they were an expression of her liberal political views rather than of confessional solidarity. Elle aimait entendre mon mari parler de sa foi. She loved to hear my husband speak about his faith]. Among the fourth-generation descendants of Abraham Raffalovich at the end of the First World War only Arthur Raffalovich - Paris married to Ida Wertheimer from Frankfurt, remained faithful to his Jewish origins, becoming one of the main experts in Russian economics and counselor to the Czarist embassies in Paris and London.
Furthermore, Arthur represents the last case of endogamic practice that had characterized the earlier generations of the Raffalovichs. His two daughters, Alexandra Ada and Maria, will marry two Raffalovich brothers, Nicolai and Sergei , sons of Leon and nephews of Anissim Raffalovich. Nevertheless, with him ends the epoch of the great splendor of the Raffalovichs. His son Vladimir died in of typhus fever in the Bolshevic prisons of Petersburg at age thirty-five. It can be said, then, that over four generations a progressive process of assimilation took place in the Raffalovich family.
Abraham was faithful to his ancestral religion; while the next generation was not, it remained at least nominally Jewish; the next two generations witnessed a complete integration into the surrounding gentile society both through intermarriage and conversion. The intellectual and not only financial excellence of most of the representatives of the family over the arch of almost a century attests its acceptance into the gentile dominant elites and local aristocracies.
Although these are women who arrived in Italy after Elena Raffalovich, driven to emigration in a period of fresh outbreak of anti-Semitic persecutions in the Czarist Empire and who came either to complete their studies or as refugees — Elena came for neither reason - it is noteworthy that their biographies reveal a common ambition of intellectual promotion, through culture and art, a desire to totally disassociate themselves from their Jewish heritage and a propensity to engage in a form of political and social activism characterized by radicalism and progressivism.
Although Elena did not follow a formal educational path, her vast cultural interests and her striving to be at the forefront of social and political debates characterize a whole generation of women fighting to gain access to university education. In Italy this right was granted in However, since female students until were prevented in Italy from receiving a high school education, most Italian women were until the late eighties unable to benefit from the right to higher education. Women with foreign high school degrees were thus at a greater advantage than local ones, and this partly explains why, between and , among the women college graduates in Italy, many were not natives of Italy.
This was due to a several concomitant factors, first and foremost the fact that women were not allowed into Russian universities, where a numerus clausus policy against Jews and many other non Russian ethnic groups was enforced. This occurred in a context wherein it was not unusual for Jewish women of bourgeois background to obtain a high-school degree.
The methodological interest in the biographies of Russian Jewish women in Italy in the second half of the nineteenth century lies precisely in their tripartite marginality: as women, as Jews and as foreigners. While in Russia the rapid industrialization in the nineteenth century was not matched with political and social modernization, in Italy the opposite occurred. Both Costa and Comparetti, despite their principled anticlericalism, obliged their companions to undergo Church weddings, thus forcing them to convert in order to spare the Catholic sentiments of their respective families.
The condition of Russian Jewish women in Italy must be read against the backdrop of what is known about women in other parts of Europe. The story of Elena Raffalovich, the first of a long series of Russian Jewish immigrants in Italy in the second half of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth century, introduces us to a statistically small but culturally large reality of women belonging to the haute bourgoisie.
Unlike middle-class women, whose behavioural patterns are well known from the seminal work of Marion Kaplan, these women are characterized by strong economic and intellectual independence. Indeed, Elena lived alone after her separation from Comparetti, and even left the care of their then-infant daughter to her husband. A second important distinction is the Eastern Europe-Central Europe divide. As rightly noted by Paula Hyman:. As opposed to women originating from Eastern Europe, in Central Europe the experience of civil emancipation, economic integration and a high degree of acculturation enabled Jews to situate themselves securely in the bourgeoisie.
Jewish women increasingly participated in philanthropic activities and organizations, which not only gave them a voice in the public sphere without challenging gender norms, but also helped them develop close friendships and ties with non-Jewish women who supported similar causes. A Russian who operated in Western Europe, Elena modeled an alternative version of feminist activism, one that was at variance with the traditional gender-role cleavage then current in Western bourgois.
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She was one of the first, but by far not the only woman to intermarry. There is some suggestion that among those Jews who attained wealth and became part of a small upper bourgeois stratum, women were much more reluctant than men to jettison Jewish practice and identity. The Raffalovich story reveals a different attitude of Italian Jewish women, generally more conservative, than those of Eastern Europe who in increasing numbers were coming to the peninsula. Against this backdrop her restlessness can be compared to that of Flora Randegger, a Triestine woman with a Jewish deeply religious background, who traveled twice from Triest to Jerusalem, where she hoped to teach Italian and to establish a school for Jewish girls, thereby securing independence of profession and income.
It seems that Jewish women could choose complete emancipation, typically resulting in total estrangement from Judaism, like Raffalovich, or subordination within traditional family structures that permitted autonomy of action only in philanthropic enterprises, like Randegger. Social work became the path of least resistance for Jewish women intent upon access to the public sphere. Social feminism is an admixture of social work and feminism, moderate and motherly.
Raffalovich was precisely at odds with the fact that in Italy at the turn of the century, education had not yet been dissociated from philanthropic preoccupations. Elena never sought out solidarity networks, either on a confessional or on a gender-oriented basis. She acted alone, benefitting from her considerable family resources, and collaborated indiscriminately with men and women who shared her ideals.
Raffalovich was spared the caution and self-denial of Jewish women seeking to become bourgeois, a quest of many contemporary German Jewish women, according to Kaplan. The reciprocity of the two remains to be studied in their multifarious contexts. His scholarship deals mainly with Jewish literature of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Italy. Tullia Catalan, Cristiana Facchini, Quest. Issues in Contemporary Jewish History.
Focus Portrait of Italian Jewish Life ss. Practices of Cultural Nationalism. Alfonso Pacifici and the Jewish Renaissance in Italy Miscellanea Holocaust Research and Archives in the Digital Age. Holocaust Intersections in 21st-Century Europe. The Great War. A Historical Appraisal. Contested Narratives of a Shared Past. The Making of Antisemitism as a Political Movement. Political History as Cultural History Modernity and the Cities of the Jews. Jews in Europe after the Shoah.
Studies and Research Perspectives. Abstract In the nineteenth and the first half of the twentieth century, Italy held a strong appeal for Russian travelers. This is how Domenico describes the reasons for the separation: Affetta da malinconie isteriche [ As rightly noted by Paula Hyman: As opposed to women originating from Eastern Europe, in Central Europe the experience of civil emancipation, economic integration and a high degree of acculturation enabled Jews to situate themselves securely in the bourgeoisie.
Michail G. Vittorio Strada Milan: Scheiwiller, ; N. I would like to thank my friend and collegue Professor Igor Aronov of the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem for his bibliographical references in Russian, and to express my gratitude to Giulia Rispoli and Paolo De Luca for having allowed me to read their forthcoming article Russian emigration in Italy in the pre-revolutionary period: the case of the school of Capri.
Concerning the Russian romantic fascination for Italy, which reached its peak in the middle of the nineteenth century see Olga Matich, Erotic Utopia. During his long sojourns abroad he studied law at La Sapienza University in Rome, where he became associated with another Ukrainian Jewish emigrant, Pinhas Rutenberg , the father of the hydroelectric infrastructure of British Palestine. L'Occidente e l'Italia nella biografia di I. For a first approach to his familiar story and his Odessian years see in particular Da Odessa a Torino. Conversazioni con Marussia Ginzburg. In appendice: scritti giovanili inediti di Leone Ginzburg , ed.
Maria Chiara Avalle Turin: Meynier, Accati, M. Cattaruzza, M. Dal Rinascimento alla Restaurazione Rome: Carocci Alexiei N. Tsamutali St. Petersburg: Nestor History in Russian. It includes only the brief biographical sketches of Herman, Marie and their three sons. Elena is mentioned only in a note drawing information from an article in the Italian Wikipedia. Guzzo, Don Lorenzo Milani.
Un rivoluzionario, un santo, un profeta o un uomo? Alle origini della psicoanalisi italiana. Mia moglie rischia di morire [asphyxia. My wife is at risk of death]. Abbiamo veduto come di gran cuore egli accordasse la mano della figlia minore Elena ad un giovane filologo professor universitario da lei stessa scelta a suo sposo. We can testify how happily he agreed to the marriage of his younger daughter Elena to a young university professor whom she chose.
In the private collection belonging to Elisa Frontali Milani there are many letters of Leon addressed to Domenico, who studied Russian and frequently travelled to Russia for his researches on the Kalevala.
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Unfortunately, only one letter in his huge correspondence survives that is seemingly addressed to Elena. See Catalogo generale del fondo Domenico Comparetti, carteggio e manoscritti , eds. Harrison The archive preserves as well a number of letters between the mayor of the city and Elena. Antonelli Elena was not present at the ceremony and all the official discourses were delivered exclusively by males, among which Adolfo Pick whose lecture has been reprinted in Gasparini, Adolfo Pick, , La scuola fa la storia: gli archivi scolastici per la ricerca e la didattica , ed.
His second wife and former pupil Luise Levin, whom he married in , was Jewish. The extant bibliography about the work and the life of these female writers is still scant. Genere e intercultura , eds. Laura Orvieto has been the object of valuable studies by Caterina Del Vivo. She was also one of the first of the many Jewish female authors for children in Italy during the Savoy monarchy.