Edoardo Albinati

Edoardo Albinati
The Catholic School

First Book Award: Nominee

The Catholic School by Edoardo Albinati was nominated for the 2019 First Book Award.

What's the First Book Award? What's this?

The Catholic School, the first novel translated in to English by author, journalist, translator and screenwriter Edoardo Albinati, is a contemporary epic that thoroughly deserved winning the prestigious Strega Prize.

Inspired by the brutal torture, rape, and murder of two young women by three Catholic school boys in 1975 – known as the Circeo massacre – The Catholic School explores the intersection between the world of teenage boys and the structures of power in modern Italy. The novel also reflects on the legacy of abuse, the Italian bourgeoisie, and the relationship between sex, violence, and masculinity.

For over twenty years Albinati worked as a teacher in the penitentiary of Rebibbia, an experience narrated in the memoir Wild May. He made his writing debut in 1988 with l polacco lavatore di vetri, which was adapted into the film The Ballad of the Windshield Washers, and won the 2004 Viareggio Literary Award for novel Svenimenti.

His experiences in Afghanistan as part of the UN High Commission for Refugees was the basis of his non-fiction book Coming Back: Diary of a Mission to Afghanistan, which was translated to English by Howard Curtis in 2014.

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