Remembering Rossana Rossanda

I don’t see enough of this kind of encouragement for young girls and women in Italy, but occasionally I do. This wonderful poster was sited in the heart of Florence, on a wall. It commemorates Rossana Rossanda, see below, and, I hope inspires young girls to be like her.

Rossanda (1924 – 2020) died in September of this year. She was an Italian communist politician, journalist, and feminist.

Rossanda was born in Pula, then part of Italy, she studied in Milan and was a student of philosopher Antonio Banfi. At a very young age, she took part in the Italian resistance and, following the end of World War II, she joined the Italian Communist Party (PCI). After a short period, secretary Palmiro Togliatti named her responsible for culture in the party. She was elected for the first time to the Italian Chamber of Deputies in 1963.

In 1968 she published a small essay, entitled L’anno degli studenti (The Year of the students), in which she declared her support for the youth movement. Rossanda was part of a minority inside the PCI that was against the Soviet Union, and, together with Luigi Pintor, Valentino Parlato, and Lucio Magri founded the party and newspaper il manifesto. This caused her expulsion from the Communist Party after its XII National Congress held in Bologna.

In the 1972 elections, Il Manifesto obtained only 0.8% of the votes. It therefore merged with the Proletarian Unity Party, forming the Proletarian Unity Party for Communism. She later abandoned party politics but kept her role as director of il manifesto.

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