Eugenio Corti (21 January 1921 – 4 February 2014) was an Italian writer born in Besana in Brianza. After participating in the Italian retreat from Russia in World War II, he joined the Italian Freedom Fighters. Based on these experiences, he wrote Few Returned and The Last Soldiers of the King. His seminal work, however, is The Red Horse, a 1000-page novel again based on his experiences and those of his fellow Italians during and after the Second World War. It was voted the best book of the 1980s in a public survey in Italy and has been translated into six languages, including Japanese. It has had twenty-five editions since it was first published in May 1983.
Awards and other initiatives
In summer 1994, a poll promoted by the newspaper Avvenire revealed that Corti was the most popular Christian writer in Italy. Corti received the international award of the Golden Medal for Merit of the Catholic Culture in 2000. In May 2005, the "Eugenio Corti" international cultural association was officially formed. The association was born from the initiative of some readers, mostly young college students and professionals, and was aimed at publicizing the writer and his works to the world of culture and to the larger public, as well as, more in general, making culture with Corti's figure as an inspiration. One of the main activities of the association is the promotion of lectures and meetings.
On 7 December 2007, the Comune (Council) of Milan awarded Corti the Ambrogino d'Oro. Between June and July 2008 the weekly Famiglia Cristiana sold The Red Horse in attachment to the magazine, in three volumes. In November 2009, following an official poll which appeared on the French weekly Le Figaro magazine, The Red Horse was pointed out by critic Étienne de Montety as the most important novel appeared in France in the last 25 years. On 18 December 2009, the Province of Milano awarded Corti the prestigious Prize Isimbardi, for citizens and associations promoting worthy initiatives in favour of the Milan community.
On 9 February 2010, the Lombard regional council gave him the "Lombardy for Work" prize, an acknowledgement for the inspiration, industry and creativity of citizens who may have contributed significantly to the economical and social development of Lombardy in the field of work, and enterprise. Specifically, Corti received the award for cultural merits. On 6 March 2010, during the meeting called "Eugenio Corti, Brianza and the world: the rediscovery of the Brianza model for the global society in the Third Millennium" that took place in Monza, the committee for Eugenio Corti's Nobel Prize candidacy was officially introduced. On 22 April 2010, in Monza, Corti received one of the special prizes of the "BtoB Awards - Dale Carnegie Training", an event arranged by the Best to Brianza magazine and sponsored by the Italian branch of Dale Carnegie Italia with support from the council of the Province of Monza and Brianza.
Nobel Prize candidacy
In March 2010, ACIEC (Associazione Culturale Internazionale Eugenio Corti), founded in his honor, started a petition through its website. The aim of the petition is to compel the Swedish Academy to make Corti a candidate for the Nobel Prize for literature. As of September 2010, the petition has been signed by several thousand supporters.
- I più non ritornano (Few Returned) (1947)
- Il cavallo rosso (The Red Horse) (1983)
- Gli ultimi soldati del Re (Last soldiers of the King) (1994)
- Il Medioevo e altri racconti (2008)
- Processo e morte di Stalin (1962)
- Il fumo nel tempio (1995)
- Breve storia della Democrazia Cristiana, con particolare riguardo ai suoi errori (1995)
- Le responsabilità della cultura occidentale nelle grandi stragi del nostro secolo (1998)
- Processo e morte di Stalin (con altri testi sul comunismo) (1999)
- La terra dell'indio (1998)
- L'isola del paradiso (2000)
- Catone l'antico (2005)
- Corti, Eugenio (2003). The Last Soldiers of the King: Wartime Italy, 1943-1945 (nonfiction). Columbia, Missouri: University of Missouri Press. p. 329 pp.
- Van Ells, Mark D. (City University of New York) (March 2005). "A philosophical soldier (review of The Last Soldiers of the King)". H-Net Reviews. Retrieved 2007-08-28.
- "Meeting di Rimini: raccolte migliaia di firme pro-Corti". Il Cittadino di Monza, September 1, 2010. Retrieved on 2010-09-07.
- Addio a Eugenio Corti autore de "Il cavallo rosso" (Italian)