Roberto Pertici

Uso pubblico della storia e questioni di metodo: Silvio Pellico "sterilizzato"?

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The first edition of Silvio Pellico's "Le Mie Prigioni" (Turin, 1832) is known to have many departures from the original manuscript. Most scholars set these at times significant differences down to the author's own pen in correcting the proofs, as well as to inevitable printer's banalization creeping into the text. Another theory recently advanced by A.A. Mola suggests that the real cause was censorship by the first editor, the Piedmontese Giuseppe Bocca, who systematically sought to play down the religious side to the book. Mola claimed that such "secular sterilization" had been further practised by other editors and commentators in the ensuing century and a half. The present essay uses a historical-philological approach to show how inconsistent and contradictory this thesis was. It aroused some journalistic stir which, the author argues, calls for a new look at the old question of vexed relations between historical research and the media system.

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