"El Oro de Napoles" - a great work by Pio Caro-Baroja

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

When I opened this blog, I would have never thought that one day one of my pictures would have become the cover of a book. It happened that I got a message from Pio Caro-Baroja, regarding a project about a book he was translating and editing in Spanish, "L'oro di Napoli" ( The gold of Naples) from Giuseppe Marotta.
Diaries of an explorer
The request was the use of a picture I took in Naples about Spaccanapoli: at the beginning I was thinking it was just for an image that would have been used inside the book, but...the big surprise was to receive some courtesy copies from Pio with the picture as book cover!!! What an honour!!!

The main purpose of Pio was to value the masterpiece of Giuseppe Marotta, L'Oro di Napoli, written and published in 1947, a collection of 36 tales published on the major Italian newspaper, il Corriere della Sera

Even if at the beginning this collection did not have much success, in 1954 it inspired the genius of Vittorio de Sica that directed the famous movie L'Oro di Napoli, based on the Giuseppe Marotta's tales, interpreted by great actors such as Sophia Loren, Totò, Silvana Mangano, Vittorio de Sica and Edoardo de Filippo.
However, outside Italy, this collection has not been published and it is known just as a movie.

Because of his passion for Neapolitan song, the Italian movies and the city of Naples, Pio decided to translate this collection in Spanish and in November this gave the birth to El oro de Nápoles, in Spanish.

Personally, I did not read neither the book before nor watched the movie, but I loved this collection, as it represents effectively a social portrait of Naples after the World War II, especially that social environment of those alleys that are not even reached by the sun.

All the characters carry their own vision of life, but carry also an extraordinary vitality and deepness: you can find in this world the "iettatore" ( literally the carrier of bad luck), a beggar, a former nobleman, a sort of lawyer, a priest, a shopkeeper, a writer and so on.

As Pio says in his presentation, El oro de Nápoles is "an heroic and someway comic poem about a city, Naples, abandoned to a fate marked by the terrible war scars. It is an enormous open-air theatre, where you can hear the actors crying and complaining ( in a comic way), happy and melancholic songs, but most of all it is an autobiography of Giuseppe Marotta, about this generation and his family on this big stage".

It represents also the love of the author, Giuseppe Marotta, for his city, as he moved to Milan at the age of 25 years old, for and that environment where he grew up. This could be the history of each person that moves to another city: it can happen in fact that when you live in your hometown, you could even hate it, but when you leave it, you realize that you love it.

I would recommend you to buy this book as it provides you a real picture of a big city like Naples during a difficult period like it was after the World War II: it is a pleasure to read it and not absolutely boring. Then, if you speak or understand Spanish, this could be even a good exercise for you to improve your Spanish skills! :-) You can purchase the book via Amazon or via the publisher Editorial Caro Raggio.

I wanna also thank Pio Caro-Baroja for his wonderful work, for having chosen my picture and for making me discover a masterpiece and a great poem and collection! Can't wait to watch the movie now!
Diaries of an explorer

There's nothing better than using the own words of Pio about himself:

"I was born in 45 years ago in Madrid, even if I don't feel so much madrileño. In fact, my roots are Italian ( the Raggio family comes from Genoa), my mother comes from Itzea and the Baroja family from the Navarra region.

I grew up in a family of eccentric people and artists like writers, painters, historians, cinema directors: some of them have been really important ( Pio Baroja, Julio Caro-Baroja).
In all this confusion and this messy environment, I grew up with some confused ideas, mostly as a "amateur"; this has been a problem for a long time, but now it is not a problem anymore: I live my life by following my great passions, such as books, photography and hiking in the countryside. I'm a free bird and I feel like an independent anarchist.

I'm half editor and half farmer. I love being a farmer, but a bit less an editor. I don't need too much from life, professionally I'm not that ambitious, I spend my life protecting the heritage of my ancestors and taking care of the closest people around me. I've just translated and published a book about a forgotten Neapolitan ( Naples is the city I love the most), I'm writing a book about familiar memories and I'm preparing a photography exposition. I don't have much more to say".

4 commenti:

Cocoa and Lavender said...

Congratulations! It is a beautiful photo, Marco. I looked, but am unable to find the movie for rent. I would love to see it... ~ David

Marco Zannin said...

Thanks a lot David! :-) maybe the movie is too old and maybe it's just for sale...maybe you could download it somewhere ;-)

Cubic Zirconia 4A Quality Stones said...

Great Article. it is really interesting, I hope everybody lick this Post.

Marco Zannin said...

Thanks a lot! :-)

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