A Sicilian Food Journey

Britain has long had a fascination with Italy. Arguably, this reached its peak in the expeditions of the Victorian and Edwardian travellers, writers and artists, among them John Ruskin, George Gissing, the Brownings, Norman Douglas and Edward Lear, as they set sail in pursuit of culture and civilisation. As John Pemble’s book The Mediterranean Passion…

Leonardo Sciascia (1921-1989)

  Leonardo Sciascia was one of Italy’s greatest writers, but he will probably be best remembered for what he brought to an understanding of Sicily, where he was born and lived most of his life. It is his articulation of Sicilian identity and the Sicilian predicament, including the impact of the mafia, through his novels…

Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa (1896-1957)

Everyone visiting Sicily for the first time should read Il Gattopardo (The Leopard), for what it says about Sicilian history and identity. The strength of Lampedusa’s novel, published only after his death, is the way in which wider themes are addressed in a beautifully crafted narrative. Set at the time of the Risorgimento, the pains…

Sicilian Films Premiered in London

The Riverside Studio, shortly to be closed for a three year refurbishment, hosted packed premieres for The Mafia Only Kills in the Summer and The Voice of Peppino Impastato at the end of 24 July; two films which, in different ways, reflect original, Sicilian resistance to the mafia. In contrast to the often romanticised dramatisations…