31 July 1919 – 31 July 2019

On the occasion of the first centenary of the birth of Primo Levi, the Jewish Museum of Australia and CO.AS.IT. Museo Italiano, under the MMV banner (Multicultural Museums Victoria), the Jewish Holocaust Centre and the Italian Cultural Institute are proud to announce

PRIMO LEVI: WRITER, WITNESS, SCIENTIST.

ITALIAN AND JEWISH ORGANISATIONS UNITE TO CELEBRATE LIFE

The partner organisations will present a series of cultural initiatives in Melbourne, celebrating and thoughtfully engaging with the work of the renowned Jewish Italian writer, intellectual, scientist and Holocaust survivor Primo Levi (1919-1987). Under the inspiring guide of intellectuals such as Mirna Cicioni, Raimond Gaita, Paul Forgasz and Mark Nicholls, and actors Steve Bastoni and Daniela Farinacci, we shall explore Levi’s life and work, situating them within the relevant historical and cultural contexts, especially the history of the Jewish presence in Italy and the persecution of European Jews under Nazi-Fascism. We shall look at the momentous moral, political and philosophical issues tackled by Levi and reflect on their ongoing relevance to our lives in today’s world. Throughout, the emphasis is on offering a series of outstanding and accessible cultural experiences, to encourage independent thought and participation.

Initiatives, spanning from 29 July to 27 November 2019, include Reading Primo Levi in 2019 and Italian Jewish History, two short courses, run, respectively, by Dr Mirna Cicioni and Dr Paul Forgasz both at the Jewish Museum of Australia; “One of those books we cannot do without”: Reflections on Primo Levi’s If This is a Man, a talk by Professor Raimond Gaita, and Italia Ebraica: The Jews of Italy – A historical perspective, a talk by Dr Paul Forgasz, both at CO.AS.IT. Museo Italiano; The Sign of The Chemist, a theatre evening at the Italian Cultural Institute with acclaimed Australian actors Steve Bastoni and Daniela Farinacci, in partnership with the Centro Internazionale di Studi Primo Levi (Turin); The Garden of the Finzi-Continis (Vittorio De Sica, 1970), a film night with Dr Mark Nicholls at the Jewish Holocaust Centre. The series will conclude with a Jewish Italian lunch and dinner, featuring dishes from the Jewish Italian culinary tradition, at Massi in Little Collins Street, hosted by Rita Erlich.

For details, please visit the partners’ websites.

For information:

  • Jewish Museum of Australia: Emma Eldridge <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.;
  • Jewish Holocaust Centre: Danielle Kamien <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.;
  • Italian Cultural Institute: Daniela Severi <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.;
  • CO.AS.IT. Museo Italiano: Paolo Baracchi <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>