When the local train starts its quick trip from Cagliari to Sassari, Alessandra Marchi begins to tell me about her studies, the many trips to Egypt, and her research on Italian political press between Cairo and Alexandria. She describes the precarious life of a young scholar forced to deal with the difficulty of making ends meet. She has intense eyes and long brown hair. She proudly explains the work done in recent years at the House-Museum Antonio Gramsci in Ghilarza, where she is taking me.
I have never been to these places, but I keep in mind the images of Mario Dondero, the colorful murals depicting the founder of Unità in an inner Sardinia, that beautiful place with the old glasses preserved in a worn, hard leather case, the same with which the imprisoned Antonio could read and write The Prison Notebooks while being transferred from prison to prison.
Alessandra is traveling there to participate in the Ghilarza Summer School (from Sept. 5-10), the International School of Gramscian studies with the participation of scholars from around the world. Yes, because the thought of the third-most studied Italian intellectual abroad, after Dante and Machiavelli (what she calls a “complicated inheritance”), is more alive than ever.
“Researchers from Japan and Korea come here, but the country with most academic courses on his philosophy is Brazil, through one of the most important experts, Carlos Nelson Coutinho, and there are many departments and courses in Latin American universities,” Alessandra says. “Just think, in Egypt, an analysis of the Muslim Brotherhood was conducted in Gramscian theory.”