Sign for Roberto Saviano


Roberto Saviano is under death threats for denouncing the criminal deeds of the Camorra in his book Gomorra, translated and read all over the world. His freedom is under threat as well as his autonomy as a writer, his chances to meet his family, to enjoy a social life, to have part in the public life, to travel in his own country.
A young writer, guilty to have investigated the organized crime revealing its methods and its structure is forced to live an hidden, underground life, while the Camorra bosses send him death threats from their jails ordering him to stop writing for La Repubblica, his newspaper, and to keep silent. The State must do every effort to protect Saviano and to defeat the Camorra. But this is not a mere police case. It’s a problem of democracy. Saviano’s safe freedom concerns everyone of us as citizens.
Signing this appeal we intend to take charge of it, as a personal commitment, urging the State at the same time to take on its responsibility, because it’s intolerable that something like this could happen in Europe in 2008.

SIGN HERE:

http://www.repubblica.it/speciale/2008/appelli/saviano/index.html

An interview with Roberto Saviano


Do you have any regrets about the effect that writing this book has had on your life?

Sometimes life with an armed escort really gets me down, and I’m nostalgic for all the things I used to do and no longer can – going to the cinema, just going for walks – basically everything that goes to make up a life. But I’m finding ways to adjust. Perhaps I’m missing the one thing that would lead me to have real regrets: and that’s fear. I’m not afraid of what could happen to me and I believe that what I’ve done in writing this book has been worth it. And if people ask me if I’d do it again, I have to admit that I would, just the same. Even if at times I’ve cursed my book, hated it. Like something that has ruined my life forever, which it has. But it’s also done many other things. For this reason I would write it all over again. Continue reading

An extract from Gomorrah. Roberto Saviano


P A R T   O N E

T H E   P O R T

The container swayed as the crane hoisted it onto the ship. The spreader, which hooks the container to the crane, was unable to control its movement, so it seemed to float in the air. The hatches, which had been improperly closed, suddenly sprang open, and dozens of bodies started raining down. They looked like mannequins. But when they hit the ground, their heads split open, as if their skulls were real. And they were. Men, women, even a few children, came tumbling out of the container. All dead. Frozen, stacked one on top of another, packed like sardines. These were the Chinese who never die. The eternal ones, who trade identity papers among themselves. So this is where they’d ended up, the bodies that in the wildest fantasies might have been cooked in Chinese restaurants, buried in fields beside factories, or tossed into the mouth of Vesuvius. Here they were. Spilling from the container by the dozen, their names scribbled on tags and tied with string around their necks. They’d all put aside money so they could be buried in China, back in their hometown, a percentage withheld from their salary to guarantee their return voyage once they were dead. A space in a container and a hole in some strip of Chinese soil. The port crane operator covered his face with his hands as he told me about it, eyeing me through his fingers. As if the mask of his hands might give him the courage to speak. He’d seen the bodies fall, but there’d been no need to sound the alarm or alert someone. He merely lowered the container to the ground, and dozens of people appeared out of nowhere to put everyone back inside and hose down the remains. That’s how it went. He still couldn’t believe it and hoped he was hallucinating, due to too much overtime. Then he closed his fingers, completely covering his eyes. He kept on whimpering, but I couldn’t understand what he was saying. Continue reading