It is in plain sight before our eyes that sometimes certain truths of human beings are hidden. There is this bend of the Tiber, for example: Porto Giordano. A tiny strip of land where an eccentric Rome opens up, the lair and territory of a tribe of rats watched over, guided and mothered by the Rat. Tens, hundreds of specimens that thrive colonizing, despite the unquenchable hunger, until the impact of floods and disasters forces them to migrate. To escape from ambushes of land and sky. To defend themselves from men. Not all men, however, not all women. In Porto Giordano there is, in fact, a couple of old and memorable sisters, Lidia and Faustina, who experience harmony and coexistence for mankind that most people do not look at. And there is a Writer who has the will and the spirit to discover, observe, know, belong to that humanity. Perhaps because writing itself is migration: it is listening to stories that come and go, it is writing stories that will come and go. This is why the writer, in his urban wanderings, becomes the discoverer and accomplisher of migrant stories that tell of migrations: From Africa to Coney Island, from the Pedrelli bar, a meeting place for intellectuals to Villa Solesia, a clinic for memory disorders, to the Chilometro, a Pasolinian segment of a big road that goes nowhere, to the evacuees of the Campo Aniene suburb submerged by the 1997 flood of the Tiber, where Syrian refugee oiseleurs teach the art of raising birds and resist the blows of those who do not want them.
Alfredo Speranza’s narrative architecture interweaves past and present, geography and history: a raid between realism and fantasy that, without ever yielding to easy didacticism or moralizing, chooses instead irony, paradox, sweetness, the music of language: all to look into the face of what it is to migrate kilometers or millimeters for us humans.
Alfredo Speranza was born in Rome in 1950. He graduated in Electronic Engineering, manager and then entrepreneur in the info-telematics sector. With Rattatata, which is his debut novel, he was a finalist and special mention at the Calvino Prize 2021.
Pub date: March 2022
Format: 256 pp
Finalista e menzione speciale al Premio Calvino 2021