sabato 12 gennaio 2019

(John L. Allen Jr.) In his celebrated 1958 novel Il Gattopardo, Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa captures the sense of an old world passing away during the Italian Risorgimento in the 19th century, which dethroned the old nobility and eventually led to the unification of the country. At one point the character Tancredi, a young noble trying to make his way in the new order, delivered the novel’s epigrammatic line. “Everything must change,” Tancredi says, “so that everything may stay the same.” Recognizing the cultural truth embedded in the saying, Italians today have the delicious phrase una riforma gattopardesca, “a Gattopardo reform,” to refer to seemingly dramatic changes that don’t actually alter the fundamental dynamics of a situation. (...)