Ferruccio Monterosso

Pardini’s positive ardor and resolute vitality do not mean that he nurtures an idea which is light-heartedly triumphalist. Intelligent and sensitive, he does not close his eyes in the face of evil or contradictions or the hardships that pepper our very existence. He himself did not lead an easy life – his father died when he was only 14.

He wrote:

The storm screamed

From the sea, the candid sailboat disappeared

It brought the fragrance of faraway lands

I was a child, I barely knew how to cry

I was yet to know human suffering

Only my mother knew how to console me

In the right way

Brought up in the climate of war

Poisons were in the air

And still today, Eugenio, living in this era, one that is so full of hardships, feels like tears well up in his eyes. But his is not a plaintive, remissive, pathetic cry: it is an virile, active cry, it does not mirror a Pardini resigned to defeat. His pain, beyond personal reasons, can be traced back to the condition of objective unhappiness which the world so often finds itself in; but it most certainly isn’t a signal of giving up, because, on the contrary, it indicates a desire to assert and enjoy the inestimable values that are still present in the world.


Born in Cremona in 1929, he taught first in secondary schools (where he also exercised administrative functions) and was later professor of Italian Literature at the Cremona campus of the Università di Padova, where he held courses on humanist philology and codicology. He has taken part in ministerial enrichment programs in various secondary schools and taught at academic institutions both in Italy and abroad. His interest in Leopardi has led to him participating in international conventions and seminars for foreign Italian experts of the Centro Nazionale di Studi Leopardiani di Recanati, in addition to other congresses; his contributions figure in the relevant summaries. He has collaborated with the “Studi Leopardiani”, the center’s magazine. The volume “Dalla parte di Leopardi”, published by the Biblioteca Statale di Cremona in 1995 sold out. Also in Cremona, he was scientific coordinator of the “Incontri Leopardiani” together with Severino, Frattini, Ferroni, Grili Mario Luzi and Lydia Alfonsi (autumn 1998). He is now preparing for a systematic revisitation of the Infinito both as a “canto” and one of the central themes of Leopoardi’s opus. He is also working on a history of Leopardian criticism of the late 20th century. Other publications include: “Cremona” (1950), “La critica letteraria contemporanea” (’67), “Scritti linguistici del Manzoni”, literary criticism (’72), “Le lettere di Ippolito Nievo a Matilde Ferrari” (’77), “Come leggere il Male oscuro di Giuseppe Berto” (’77), “Gli studi di Giovanni Gentile sul Petrarca e sul Rinascimento” (’83), “La critica letteraria nell’età del metodo storico” (’76-’86), “Poetiche e metodologie dell’ultimo trentennio” (’91-’92), “Il mistico Alfonso”, “Etica e religione di Luigi Russo” (Viareggio, Mauro Baroni, ’92) (finalist for the Viareggio-Rèpaci, Amantea Prize), “La dolorosa intelligenza”. “Testimonianze e saggi tra il romanticismo e la fine del Novecento”, with a foreword by Manuel Blas “Il mio sodalizio con F. Monterosso e M. Baroni” (Mauro Baroni, 1977). These works have been discussed in public debates and reviewed in newspapers, magazines and on RAI. He published the unedited letters of Silvio Pellico (’64), conducted research in the “Langhe of Cesare Pavese” (’78), wrote the preface to the volume“Lettere vanitose” by A. Piromalli (’85), took part in an “Inchiesta sulla poesia italiana contemporanea” (Investigation of contemporary Italian poetry) (“Riscontri”, ’87), edited “Voci dal di dentro” by A. Malfasi (’94), in addition to “Meditazioni” by S. Vesconi (’95), “Tre racconti di Gallura” by P. Ciboddo, and “Una x una” by C. Paolini (’97) (these last three works were published by Mauro Baroni). He is a member of the “Casa di Dante” scientific committee in Abruzzo and the exhibitions “Dante e le arti figurative” in Torre dei Passeri (Pescara). His two most recent volumes are “Leopardi tra noi” (Why we can’t not call ourselves Leopardians), Viareggio, Mauro Baroni Publishers, 1998 (Pisa Prize) and “Nelle zolle della vita umana, l’eterno enigma…” a critical essay on poetry by Licio Gelli. Editore Giuseppe Laterza di Giuseppe Laterza – Bari, 2002. He is an emeritus member – Literature Section – of the Accademia Universale “Federico II di Svevia” and the Accademia dei Micenei. He is president of the “Associazione Artisti Cremonesi”. Co-director of the “Studi bonghiani”, he is a member of the magazines’ editorial committees “Riscontri” and “Si scrive” (edited by M.G. Giordano and E. Bettini respectively) and of the “Dizionario italiano ragionato” D.I.R. (D’Anna); he is a component of the Scientific Committee for the publication of the complete works of Lorenzo Viani (Mauri Baroni publishers). He has been the editor of “Otto/Novecento” and contributed regularly to “Cultura e Scuola” as well as “Apulia, Arca, Belfagor, Cenobio, Convivium, Critica letteraria, Galleria, Idea, Il Giorno, Il Ponte, I problemi della pedagogia,Italianistica, Ragguaglio librario, Rapporti, Rassegna di cultura e vita scolastica,Rassegna pugliese, Scuola e didattica, Tempo nuovo, Ungheria d’oggi” in addition to a variety of local newspapers. He has been a guest speaker at Manzonian conventions and for the Associazione Internazionale per gli Studi di Lingua e Letteratura Italiana (A.I.S.L.L.I.), in addition to many others. He has studied Hungarian, Soviet and Russian, Swiss, Danish, North American (Californian in particular) Italianism with visits to those countries; he has worked with Swiss and Italian radio and television (programs include Tuttilibri”, “Classe Unica”, “Occasioni”, “Il Paginone”, “Galassia Gutenberg”, “Lampi”).

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