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Hemingway Adventure


Michael Palin - Hemingway AdventureIt’s impossible not to be affected by it. It is as if the Third Army, far from dead and buried, is lined up on parade, each soldier answering his name, ‘Presente!’ Each one ready to follow his leaders into battle once again.

It’s a con, but a very good one, and it doesn’t surprise me to learn that, like Milan Central, this was commissioned by Mussolini, in an attempt to glorify a bloody past and to erase the uncomfortable memories of the massive defeat the Italians suffered at Caporetto in 1917 (and which is the background for A Farewell to Arms).

The intention of the Fascist architects is obvious. Anyone climbing these massive terraces soon becomes a mere speck against the stonework, tiny and insignificant before the unifying might of the state.

In an attempt to preserve my sense of identity I retreat to the café at the military museum across the road and order a cappuccino.
Music is blaring out, but it’s not marching bands. It’s Sheryl Crow.
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  • Series: Hemingway Adventure
  • Chapter: Redipuglia
  • Country/sea: Italy
  • Place: Redipuglia
  • Book page no: 55

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