Memory and Oblivion


  • Davide Schiffer Center of Neuro-Bio-Oncology Foundation of the Polyclinic of Monza, Vercelli


Anti-fascism , Memory , History, 20th Century, Italy


The article deals with the double significance of term memory: the memory of the past and the capacity of remembering. Recently, the study of memory greatly improved in animals, in which it has been demonstrated that short and long term memory correspond to functional and anatomical modifications of synapses respectively. In man its evaluation is still based on criteria emerged from the anatomo-clinical correlations of the past two centuries. Memory, together with conscience and lived experience, is a trilogy that composes the personal identity. The memory of the fascist period in Italy, from its triumph to the end of the war with the anti-fascist opposing culture and the Resistance, includes the vicissitudes of Giuseppe Levi and his entourage. It is analyzed with the criteria contained in a recently published book in order to explain or to stop the fading to day of this sad period of Italian history. The disappearance of individual memories, with their existential charge, and the manipulations of the collective memory are mainly responsible for similar phenomena.