A reflection on the “barbarism” of social and working situations, the presentation of Greta Pavan's book in Cosenza


By John

A pure soul in search of happiness. Of her place in the world in a materialistic social context to the nth degree. It is the story of Margherita, the protagonist who wriggles through the pages of “Almost Nothing Wrong”, a coming-of-age novel written by Greta Pavan. On Monday evening, the writer herself spoke about her book at Mondadori Cosenza.
A text that the Sila Prize jury included in its Decina 2024 and which followed the original and exclusive process – envisaged for all the chosen volumes – of being presented to the public by its author. It is a strong text, that of Pavan, subtly ruthless. It follows the events of Margherita, a young woman, daughter of Venetian emigrants, who lives in Brianza. A Brianza where everything revolves around work. Sociality, relationships, well-being, thoughts, dreams that become nightmares for those who are unable to “submit” to the logic of materialism tout court. A Brianza that stands there like a warning, a Tarpeian cliff ready to free itself without scruples of its unsuitable children.
During the presentation of the book, Greta Pavan spoke about a very fertile provincial literature but often monothematic in terms of setting, almost always in the South. So she thought of looking for a story in another part of Italy, where it has always been difficult find some. «Where there is great well-being, first and foremost of an economic nature – explained the writer – where everything seems to be going well, it is more difficult to find stories, because these necessarily start from a conflict. If there is no conflict, even in a narrative with a happy ending, it is very difficult to build a story. And within environments of this type it is difficult to find them. And so I asked myself, is there really a small flaw in this, isn't there a small flaw?”. And he found the crack. «There are some cracks – continued Greta Pavan – apparently very small but which can be investigated. And within the chapters of the novel you will find minimal episodes, of minimal violence, but not traumatic violence, it is more of an underground tension than an explosion of violence. We are talking about characters who are defined by very small acts of violence that limit their existence. And all of this happens specifically in the workplace.”
It invites reflection, “Almost nothing wrong”. And she looks tragically at the pressing current events. To the barbarity of some social and work situations. Not only for young people, but for society as a whole. «Every now and then there is a need to return to having a civil literature – commented Gemma Cestari, director of the Sila Prize, present at the event – ​​which leads us to reflect on how it is possible to have arrived at certain contemporary situations and how, who knows, perhaps we could change them. “Almost nothing wrong” she says, more than a place, a time, our sick time».