Campania Felix by Giuseppe Cataldo is also the story of the beauty of the land it belongs to, a hymn to life and the ability to savor the gifts that nature offers us
By Francesca Rossetti
Giuseppe Cataldo, author of Campania origin, has recently published the book “Campania Felix” in which he talks about his land after the pandemic: he has the floor.
Who is Giuseppe Cataldo and how did the idea of a book on the pandemic come about?
Giuseppe Cataldo is a small cog, a grain of sand, an integral part of a whole, who has understood that he has a voice.
The book, the journey as I like to call it, doesn’t talk about the pandemic in the strict sense but starts from it to demonstrate first how much resilience and then how much resistance we have: there is a profound difference between resilience and resistance. The first testifies to the ability to adapt, the second is the ability to react. The book was born at a time when everything was at a standstill, even my life slowed down, and, always thinking in positive terms, this “slowing down” gave rise to the need to face my, our, fears, limits, through food for thought. One of the fears that I lived on my skin was that of a spread towards social disintegration: I lived the emptiness around me, as a privileged person being one of the few free to move. Thus, I began to reflect on how much the narrative affects and has affected the social and political life of a people. During the journey I could not fail to notice, with my travel companions, the great beauty that surrounds us, landscape, historical and human. This gave me strength in the moments of discouragement that there were.
The book is titled “Campania Felix”: in what sense?
The title is deliberately provocative. A lot of time has passed since Pliny the Elder (smiles). You see, I start from the assumption that one can no longer live only on historical memories as one risks remaining motionless, crushed by the memory of a land that was once great. Likewise, I denounce a gloomy narrative which, from an initial moment of denunciation, legitimate, has insisted to such an extent as to condition the present of my region and perhaps of the whole of Italy. In fact, always insisting on the negative sides, on certain issues, forgetting the good that surrounds us, has meant that this narration becomes, or risks becoming, a model. The pandemic in this as in other things has been a highlighter. Hence the idea of seeking, through a positive narration, to bring balance, indicating, with examples from Campania, new models to strive for, emphasizing the capacity for social reaction, the beauty and the values that, reading the media, seem to have disappeared. Maybe because the positive and the beautiful don’t make the news and yet that’s where we should start again to design a new normality. Therefore, everyone abandoning the logic of an extra “like” to embrace the logic of an analogical social recomposition, exploiting the development and not undergoing it, of a society in which the comparison is real and not plastic. If we are committed, it can be done: it is enough to get the community used to the beautiful and the positive again, abandoning the logic of cons and individualism which has not led, you will agree with me, development, indeed.
How is the current situation of Covid 19 in Campania compared to other regions?
If you allow me, it doesn’t matter what the Covid situation is like in Campania. It exists, it must be tackled with all the tools we have at our disposal. Not with privations, however, not anymore, to which he must resort only and only as a last resort. Much less with personalisms but by relying on science. In one chapter I speak of the beehive: the whole works if everyone does their part without divisive protagonisms..
The role of healthcare and the revolution of thoughtCopyAMP code
Healthcare needs to be redesigned, the pandemic has shown us the way. Strengthening territorial medicine is a must. With Meritocrazia Italia, a socio-cultural association that I represent at a regional level, we are fighting hard for this. There is still too much focus on hospital construction when, in our opinion, important investments should be made in basic medicine also through the use of new and effective technologies. Health care must be able to put man back at the centre, who in this case is a patient. Taking care of the collective well-being with preventive actions, with programmed and planned activities. A revolution in thought would help a lot in this: investing, controlling, making efficiency in a continuous cycle. Also in this case it is a matter of models: we should take the best models and replicate them through planning and programs. Look, everything immediately generates emergencies and emergencies, in addition to doing damage, always run faster than the answers.
How to overcome the fear of the virus by returning to ancient traditions
By an equal and opposite action to the force with which we produced it.
There are many fears: fear of the virus in the strict sense, fear of the present, a war has also been added, fear of the future. Every fear must be faced and overcome forcefully, proactively, otherwise there is a risk of remaining prisoners and not putting in all the energy necessary for a rebirth. I have never heard of year zero again but, given that the recent, pre-pandemic past in the Campania region and in Italy was not flourishing, I would have expected more courage towards a different normality planning even compared to the past one: more equitable and with a truly inclusive project. I speak, in fact, in a chapter of the relativity of the concept of normality
Benevento, Qualiano, Aversa, Rome are just some of the stages already fixed, I have a busy calendar that starts from Campania but will go far beyond in an infinite journey, on the other hand you will have noticed that the journey, the book, has no end. Thank you for the interview and greetings to the readers.