The new star of the Italian far right with an intimate pen

ESurrounded by a slightly hazy blur, a young woman fixes the reader with her limpid eyes, with gentleness and determination. The visual of the cover suggests that the author will go into the realm of the intimate, and the title, I am Giorgia. My roots, my ideas (“I am Giorgia. My roots, my ideas”, untranslated), makes this intention even clearer.

With this autobiography published on May 11 by Rizzoli, the new rising star of the Italian far right, Giorgia Meloni (Fratelli d’Italia, post-fascist), therefore, wanted to tell her journey in the first person, at a time when she is appearing as a contender for the highest positions. In doing so, it responds to a kind of tradition in the recent history of Italian rights. In 2001, the president of Forza Italia, Silvio Berlusconi, who was preparing to regain power, sent a hagiographic volume to each household entitled An Italian story (“An Italian story”). In the spring of 2016, it was the turn of the leader of the League (far right), Matteo Salvini, to publish a very autobiographical work, entitled According to Matthew (“According to Matthew”, Rizzoli, not translated).

But in this area, Giorgia Meloni has done much better than its predecessors: with a dozen reissues and more than 160,000 copies sold in less than three months, I am Giorgia literally crushed the competition for political essays, becoming the best-selling non-fiction work of the period in Italy.

At the top of the voting intentions

From her difficult childhood, marked by the absence of the father and a close relationship with the mother, to the militant apprenticeship – at the age of 15 she joined the Youth Front of the Italian Social Movement (MSI, the heir of the National Fascist Party of Benito Mussolini) -, Giorgia Meloni describes a series of fights against adversity, without hiding his scars. Arrived at the age of 3 in the Roman district of Garbatella, one of the cultural bastions of the Roman left, she built her political awareness in opposition to this environment, and this is how she will constitute a base of ultraconservative convictions, founded on religion and the promotion of a model, that of the traditional family, which it lacked so much in its childhood.

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Patiently, with regularity, Giorgia Meloni goes through the stages. At 21, she entered the council of the province of Rome. At 29, she was elected deputy, and two years later she was appointed minister of youth by a Silvio Berlusconi to whom she would remain faithful for a long time.

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