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The Story of the Lost Child

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“Naples was the great European metropolis where faith in technology, in science, in economic development, in the kindness of nature, in history that leads of necessity to improvement, in democracy, was revealed, most clearly and far in advance, to be completely without foundation.  To be born in that city–I went so far as to write once, thinking not of myself but of Lila’s pessimism– is useful for only one thing: to have always known, almost instinctively, what today, with endless fine distinctions, everyone is beginning to claim: that the dream of unlimited progress is in reality a nightmare of savagery and death.”

  • The Story of the Lost Child, by Elena Ferrante, translated from Italian by Ann Goldstein

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My Brilliant Friend

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“She wrote, in the last pages, of feeling all the evil of the neighborhood all around her.  Rather, she wrote obscurely, good and evil are mixed together and reinforce each other in turn.  Marcello, if you thought about it, was really a good arrangement, but the good tasted of the bad and the bad tasted of the good, it was a mixture that took your breath away… ‘And I feel that I have to find a solution, otherwise, everything, one thing after another, will break, everything, everything.'”

-Lena reads a letter from Lila, My Brilliant Friend, Elena Ferrante, trans. Ann Goldstein

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