"Enjoy being discreet means to immediately accept that you cannot enjoy it forever. It means really giving up, happily, the eternal and homogeneous life, source of many deadly desires."
What it means to live discreetly in the present age, in the (social) media circus, in what Bauman would call “the liquid society”? The author – a French philosopher and professor at the University of Paris VII - Denis Diderot - proposes a mandatory reflection, for anyone who wants to train his critical spirit and not give up thinking the Zeitgeist, the spirit of time.
Orienting one’s thoughts about what is alive and beautiful, both socially and politically, means going in the opposite direction to that of the appearance. It means grasping the naked beauty of the gesture; not work’s, nor statute’s, but the whispered impersonality that produces a smile, a bit of joy and energy, the democratic beauty of ordinary life. An experience "that demands to depose all sovereignty and to open to the opportunities of an anonymous life, which are rightfully unlimited”.
This approach brings us closer to a particular kind of happiness, far from the one given by having or being for someone else: "... escape the emptiness of self-images and personal ambitions; shirk things that you possess as to those you do not possess; escape both the fear of losing and that of not having anything to lose: we might call it happiness by subtraction. "
Thank you my friend, you've read my heart.
Pierre Zaoui - La discrétion : Ou l'art de disparaître
Autrement, Paris, 2013
The pleasure of reading begins long before the knowledge of what the book says. It starts from that pleasure you feel when you pick up a book that you have not read yet.
Moreover, if this book is a gift from a friend, it starts even earlier, from the gratitude towards that person, from the pleasure to understand that yes, friendship is a truly rare and precious affinity, which allows you to figure out exactly the other’s wishes and to meet them with a beaming smile of complicity.
"On the happiness of reading" is a precious book - a limited and numbered edition, featuring yarn binding and hand-cut paper - summing up Vincenzo Consolo’s thoughts on the joy of discovering the beauty of reading. A few pages that express the need for this particular oxygen, so essential to our evolution, our impulses and our noblest ideals.
Every age has its readings and its way to read them, let’s keep carefully this privileged time, this unique and discreet well-being treasure. Enjoy the reading, always!
Vincenzo Consolo, La felicità del leggere ("On the happiness of reading")
Edizioni Henry Beyle (Italian edition)
The power of literature, which transforms the lives of ordinary people in mysterious and charming characters! The early-twentieth-century peasant life in the French countryside is shaped through ten biographies, stories that are rich of details and an almost emphatic prose. Pierre Michon wants to elevate poor, ordinary country dwellers, humble workers closely linked to earth and its cycles to the rank of legendary heroes. He wants to ennoble their lives, almost violently, for his desire to tear them apart from mediocrity, to save them from their own daily reality. Memories merge with illusions, the narrative becomes turbulent, dense, vital. The power of literature, which in itself has the seed of greatness, of the accomplishment of the hunger for power that gives man the strength of rebirth.
Pierre Michon, “Vie Minuscules”
Italian Edition: Adelphi
A beautiful fairytale, full of poetry, “The woman without a shadow” is Hofmannsthal’s narrative epilogue before he started dedicating to theatre plays and it brings us to fantastic dimensions, to the primal expression of our emotions. The plot is classic and contains all the necessary elements for a fairytale: the supernatural element, fear, dealing with and overcoming adversity and the final redemption. The main character is a princess of fairies - a woman without a shadow, even in the literal sense that her body does not cast any shadow - who loves and marries a human emperor. In order to live with him, she has to redeem her magical nature and become mortal. Like all fairytales, it is somehow moralistic, it has the power to bring us back to our earliest dreams, which may be buried under the tyrannical daily routine but indeed they’re always ready to awaken thanks to the imagination. A gentle and moving tale, for which it is really worth forgetting our sorrows and turning on a reading light. A pure Rebirth.
Hugo Von Hofmannsthal, The woman without a shadow (Die Frau ohne Schatten)
Italian edition: edizioni SE
"A beautiful silence was never written" the saying goes. Real treaties on this subject were written between 1600 and 1700, including that of this Parisian author who strives to recommend a careful and economical use of the word, as heis aware of the importance of individual self-control for the flowering ofcivilisation and the perpetuation of power. Virtue teaches this: never let goto risky or impulsive statements, that could destabilize the present. Yet the art of silence is very complicated, because it is difficult to figure out which things to keep quiet and which ones to say. Overall, there is a generalprinciple: "It's good to talk only when you have to say something that isworth more than silence". To us, children and victims of verbal abundance,this quote should mean not to fill the - few - breaks with unnecessary words, to learn to be with ourselves and our silence, giving us a chance to be a moment before saying it.
Abate Dinouart: "The art of silence" (L'art de se taire)
Sellerio editore Palermo
THE PATH TO SELF KNOWLEDGE PASSES ALSO THROUGH A GARDEN
OUR PERSONALITY, OUR ASPIRATIONS AND OUR CAPACITY TO DEVELOP THEM MIRROR IN THE TRANQUILLITY OF A SECRET GARDEN OR IN THE SIMPLICITY OF A SMALL GREEN CORNER INSIDE A COURTYARD. WHAT CAN’T BE TOLD WITH WORDS CAN BE COMMUNICATED THROUGH AN ORIGINAL SYMBOL, LIKE THE GARDENING TRADITION.
THE AUTHOR OF THIS BOOK RETRACES THE HISTORY OF OVER 30 TYPES OF GARDEN AND IN EACH OF THEM IT IS POSSIBLE TO FIND THE WISH TO TAKE CARE OF THE DEEPEST AND MOST AUTHENTIC PART OF OUR INNER SELF. SO WE FIND OURSELVES ONE-TO-ONE WITH OUR MEMORY AND A SKIPPED HEARTBEAT REVEALS US THAT THIS MOMENT AND THIS PLACE FIT US PERFECTLY.
IN THE END, THIS IS THE MEANING OF THE BOOK: “… TO HELP PEOPLE DISCOVERING SOMETHING MORE OF THEMSELVES BY LOOKING AT THESE IMAGES”.
REBIRTH IS A GREEN AND SILENT PATH.
Duccio Demetrio, “Di che giardino sei? Conoscersi attraverso un simbolo”
(ndt "Which garden do you like? Know yourself through a symbol")
Edizioni Mimesis, Italy
On the occasion of Biennale Cinema, the usual column dedicated to books moves to visual arts, presenting "The Light Between Oceans", which will be released in Italy in February 2017. The film is based on the bestseller novel by M. L. Stedman, published in 2012.
The film has been presented in competition at the 73rd Venice International Film Festival on September 1st, 2016 and is the dramatic story of Tom, a lighthouse keeper in a small Australian island between the Indian Ocean and the Austral Ocean, and his wife Isabel.
The first part of the film flows focusing on Tom's psychology - he is a reduce from the First World War, who finds peace in the immensity of nature and in the isolation of the lighthouse. He falls in love with Isabel and the couple will address several difficulties, up to the moment when they found a sank boat carrying a baby crying beside the body of a man.
The film offers us the opportunity to reflect on absolute themes, thanks to the stunning photography by Adam Arkapaw and to the beautiful soundtrack by Alexandre Desplat. The picture is deeply moving, putting us in touch with our emotions. The talented actors with their performance urge us to recover the value of forgiveness, as an act of true Rebirth and as a timely message that nowadays it is important to share.
The light between oceans by Derek Cianfrance, with Michael Fassbender,Alicia Vikander, Rachel Weisz. New Zealand , 2016. (further information here)
Some books are poetical, they move us instantly for their simplicity and beauty (the two often coincide). Italo Calvino is a great master of contemporary fables and “almost realistic” novels: his Marcovaldo, who looks for nature around the city, inspires in the reader an immediate tenderness. The book consists of twenty short stories, divided into the four seasons, whose protagonist is always him, the bewildered Marcovaldo. He has a candid soul and he’s the penniless father of a large family, who dreams of an unlikely return to nature like an out-of-place citizen. The context in which he lives is a kind of non-place: an indefinite and almost abstract city, a symbol of every urban environment, in which the comic misadventures of our character take on a universal meaning, reminding us of all the nonsense connected to our human lives, in a sort of journey between illusion and disillusionment, between impulse and loneliness, with a bittersweet background that pervades the reader gradually while going through the book. But Marcovaldo is not a pessimist: he is always ready to get back into play, trying new tricks, discovering new and more congenial corners of the world. The author’s grandeur in also in keeping an absolute lirysm all over the book. A book that fits those who are not resigned, whether adult or child.
Italo Calvino, Marcovaldo
Italian Edition: Oscar Mondadori
We’re veryhappy to suggest you this reading, the same happiness we felt when we discovered this precious and refined jewel.
Le Language des Fleurs is one of the luckiest Nineteenth-century books in its genre, since it was immediately translated,illustrated and distributed all over Europe.
The author used a pen name, contributing to foster the magic and the fascination of such a romantic spirit. The Nineteenth century can be defined “the century of flowers”: the interest in botanics grows and becomes constant pretty everywhere, in particular the interest in floriography, that is appointing a symbolic meaning, a code, a proper grammar to each flower. Each feeling is assigned to a flower, developing a system that is able to express feelings more than words. The book is divided in 4 chapters, one for each season, and it is completed by 12 beautifully illustrated tables. So we discover that in a flowered bouquet there can be purity and desire… we dream is a perfumed language that nature gives us without asking anything in return:isn’t it the game of Rebirth?
Charlotte de Latour, The language of flowers
Italian edition by Casa EditriceLeo S. Olschki, collana giardini e paesaggio
Set in France during the 18th century, in which perfumes and smelly, dirty places are mixed and often intersect, the protagonist of thestory is a man with a characteristic that makes him anonymous and desperately looking for affirmation: he has no odour.
In return he discovers soon to be equipped with a formidable sense of smell, which enables him to create any kind of perfume. He can know the world through this so primitive and powerful sense, ofwhich most are unaware. The engaging storyline twists and turns and the novel soon becomes a noir when our main character becomes a serial killer, following the wake of a young girl’s perfume.
"...Because scent is the brother of breath. It penetrated men through it, none could resist to it, if they wanted to live... the one who dominated the smells, dominated the hearts of men. "
P. Suskind, Perfume: The Story of a Murderer
TEA (Italian edition)