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Disabled war veteran in Italy: polysemy of a cruel place
Journal Title: MEMORIA E RICERCA  
Author/s: Barbara Bracco 
Year:  2011 Issue: 38 Language: Italian 
Pages:  16 Pg. 9-24 FullText PDF:  545 KB
DOI:  10.3280/MER2011-038002
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Among the many "places of memory" of the Great War, the injured body of the soldier was and still is, in its materiality, the most dramatic, complex and persistent one. Only in Italy half a million men came back from the front with permanent, often highly visible, damages. The phenomenon of disabled ex-servicemen had a huge impact on society, rousing new ways of looking at the body devastated by war. This essay studies how the injured body was re-written by the disabled ex-servicemen themselves and by doctors, agitprops and politicians. Obviously different sectors of Italian society gave different and new representation of the injured body. From Barbara Bracco’s essay, it emerges a complex picture that turns violated physicalness into a polysemous place. Manifesto of medical progress or of political regeneration, ancient sign of degeneration or tool of patriotic propaganda, the soldier’s body presents itself in these pages as the real text of war experience and modernity.
Keywords: Polysemy, Body, Disability, Manifesto, Modernity; Italy

Barbara Bracco, Disabled war veteran in Italy: polysemy of a cruel place in "MEMORIA E RICERCA " 38/2011, pp. 9-24, DOI:10.3280/MER2011-038002


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