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Red StrainsMusic and Communism Outside the Communist Bloc$
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Robert Adlington

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780197265390

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197265390.001.0001

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‘In onore della Resistenza’

‘In onore della Resistenza’

Mario Zafred and Symphonic Neorealism

(p.149) 12 ‘In onore della Resistenza’
Red Strains

Ben Earle

British Academy

The post-1945 neo-realist movement in Italian cinema is one of the twentieth century's most enduring cultural legacies. In his Fourth Symphony, ‘In onore della Resistenza’ (1950), Mario Zafred (1922–87), the Zhdanovite music critic of the Communist Party daily L'Unità between 1949 and 1956, aligned his music with one of the great neo-realist themes, that of the partisan Resistance to the German occupation of Italy in the final two years of the war. Zafred's is the most notable Italian contribution to what is defined here as the mid-twentieth-century neo-realist symphony, a genre not precisely co-extensive with the socialist realist symphony of the Soviet bloc. Widely admired in the Italy of the 1950s, Zafred's music was swept off the stage of musical history by the ‘avant-garde’ revolution of the early 1960s. Half a century later, it is time to look again at the Fourth Symphony.

Keywords:   PCI, communism, Mario Zafred, socialist realism, neo-realism, Zhdanov, Maderna, avant-garde, Adorno, Gramsci

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