Pier Paolo Pasolini
Italian novelist, poet, intellectual, film director, journalist, linguist, philosopher
Pier Paolo Pasolini
Pier Paolo Pasolini was an Italian film director, poet, writer and intellectual. Pasolini distinguished himself as a poet, journalist, philosopher, linguist, novelist, playwright, filmmaker, newspaper and magazine columnist, actor, painter and political figure. He demonstrated a unique and extraordinary cultural versatility, becoming a highly controversial figure in the process.
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A Serbian Film refused classification - The Australian
Google News - over 5 years
Much as the contentious film Salo was Pier Pasolini's response to facism, A Serbian Film's director Srdan Spasojevic has painted his film as a response to his people's "own molestation by the Serbian government." The bracing film includes scenes of
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#44 We just watched this on Netflix streaming: Mishima: A life in four chapters - Podcast Film Review
Google News - over 5 years
A good Italian equivalent is novelist, poet, filmmaker, actor Pier Pasolini. (Netflix him now if you haven't heard of him) Nonetheless, Mishima was a genius and Paul Shrader (writer of Taxi Driver and Raging Bull) gives him a damn good biopic
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What's On Today
NYTimes - over 5 years
8 P.M. (HBO) KNIGHT AND DAY (2010) Cameron Diaz plays June Havens, a collection ''of alternately appealing and exasperating traits,'' A. O. Scott wrote in The New York Times, ''thrown together to satisfy market research data suggesting that audiences go for women who are tough but not aggressive, flaky but not nuts, sexy but not actually having
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Estrenos - Lanacion.com (Argentina)
Google News - over 5 years
De Pier Pasolini y dirección de Adelaida Mangani. Con Laura Novoa, Javier Drolas y el Grupo de Titiriteros del San Martín. Regio, Córdoba 6056. De jueves a sábados, a las 20:30. Domingos, a las 19.30. $ 25. Una comedia sobre el encuentro entre cuatro
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A Serbian Film: Review - Austinist
Google News - almost 6 years
... on the shock aspects of the film, comparing it to similarly savage fare like some of Takashi Miike's more violent work (his new masterpiece 13 Assassins is currently playing at the Alamo Drafthouse's South Lamar location), and Pier Pasolini's Salò
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Zeitreise nach Arabien - Pier Paolo Pasolini: "Reisen in 1001 Nacht", Corso ... - Deutschlandradio
Google News - almost 6 years
Mit Pier Pasolini unterwegs zu sein, bedeutet vor allem, sich auf eine Zeitreise zu begeben. Ab den 1960er Jahren und bis zu seinem gewaltsamen Tod 1975 war der italienische Schriftsteller und Filmemacher immer wieder in die sogenannte weite Welt
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NYTimes - about 33 years
YEAR OF THE RAT Every 12 years the Chinese Year of the Rat rolls around. Those born in 1984 or in any of the 12-year intervals preceding this year are entitled to celebrate their nativity with the likes of William Shakespeare, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Winston Churchill, George Washington and Truman Capote - all famous Rats. Lucille Liang, a native
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Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Pier Paolo Pasolini
  • 1975
    Age 52
    The June 1975 elections saw the rise of leftist options, and dwelling on his blunt, ever more political approach and prophetic style during this period, he declared the time was reached to put the most prominent Christian-Democrat figures to trial in a court, where a staging would be needed showing them walking in handcuffs and conducted by the carabinieri.
    More Details Hide Details That was urgent if the "democratic game" was to be restored and the nation saved from a tragic fate, and ridicule. He was angered by economic globalization and cultural domination of the North of Italy (around Milan) over other regions, especially the South. He felt this was accomplished through the power of TV. He lashed out at publicity and television. A debate TV program recorded in 1971, where he denounced censorship, was not actually aired until the day following his murder in November 1975. In a reform blueprint drawn up by himself in September and October 1975 (he got closer to the Communist Party, "an island of salvation"), among the desirable measures to be implemented, he cited the abolition of compulsory secondary school, and television. He opposed the gradual disappearance of Italian languages and dialects by writing some of his poetry in Friulan, the regional language of his childhood. His opposition to the liberalization of abortion law made him unpopular on the left.
    That change is related to the loss of humanism and the expansion of productivity as central to the human condition, which he despised. He found that 'new culture' was degrading and vulgar. In one interview, he said: "I hate with particular vehemency the current power, the power of 1975, which is a power that manipulates bodies in a horrible way; a manipulation that has nothing to envy to that performed by Himmler or Hitler."
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    Testimony by Pasolini's friend Sergio Citti indicated that some of the rolls of film from Salò had been stolen, and that Pasolini had been going to meet with the thieves after a visit to Stockholm, 2 November 1975.
    More Details Hide Details Despite the Roman police's reopening of the murder case following Pelosi's statement of May 2005, the judges charged with investigating it determined the new elements insufficient for them to continue the inquiry. Pasolini generated heated public discussion with controversial analyses of public affairs. For instance, during the disorders of 1968, when the autonomist university students were carrying on a guerrilla-like uprising against the police in the streets of Rome and all the leftist forces declared their complete support for the students, describing the disorders as a civil fight of proletariat against the System, Pasolini, alone among the communists, declared that he was with the police; or, more precisely, with the policemen. He considered them true proletariat, sent to fight for a poor salary and for reasons which they could not understand, against pampered boys of their same age, because they had not had the fortune of being able to study, referring to poliziotti figli di proletari meridionali picchiati da figli di papà in vena di bravate (lit. policemen, sons of proletarian southerners, beaten up by arrogant daddy's boys). He found that the policemen were but the outer layer of the real power, e.g. the judiciary and the judges. Pasolini was not alien to courts and trials. During all his life, Pasolini was frequently entangled in lawsuits filed against him, up to 33, variously charged with "public disgrace", "foul language", "obscenity", "pornography", "contempt of religion", "contempt of the state", etc., for which he was always eventually acquitted.
  • 1972
    Age 49
    In 1972 he started to collaborate with the extreme-left association Lotta Continua, producing a documentary, 12 dicembre, concerning the Piazza Fontana bombing.
    More Details Hide Details The following year he began a collaboration for Italy's most renowned newspaper, Il Corriere della Sera. At the beginning of 1975 Garzanti published a collection of critical essays, Scritti corsari ("Corsair Writings"). A Carabinieri squad car stopped a speeding Alfa Romeo near Rome. The driver, Giuseppe (Pino) Pelosi, a 17-year-old hustler, tried to run but was arrested for theft of the car, which was Pasolini's. Two hours later, the director's body was discovered.
  • 1970
    Age 47
    In 1970 Pasolini bought an old castle near Viterbo, several miles north of Rome, where he began to write his last novel, Il Petrolio, where he denounced obscure dealing on the highest spheres of government and the corporate world (the ENI, CIA, the mafia, etc.).
    More Details Hide Details The novel-documentary could not be completed due to his death.
  • 1968
    Age 45
    Regarding the Battle of Valle Giulia, which took place in Rome in March 1968, he said that he sympathized with the police, as they were "children of the poor", while the young militants were exponents of what he called "left-wing fascism".
    More Details Hide Details His film of that year, Teorema, was shown at the annual Venice Film Festival in a hot political climate. Pasolini had proclaimed that the Festival would be managed by the directors (see also Works section).
  • 1967
    Age 44
    In 1967, in Venice, he met and interviewed the American poet Ezra Pound.
    More Details Hide Details They discussed the Italian movement neoavanguardia, arts in general and Pasolini read some verses from the Italian version of Pound's Pisan Cantos. The late 1960s and early 1970s were the era of the so-called "student movement". Pasolini, though acknowledging the students' ideological motivations, thought them "anthropologically middle-class" and therefore destined to fail in their attempts at revolutionary change.
  • 1966
    Age 43
    In 1966 he was a member of the jury at the 16th Berlin International Film Festival.
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  • 1961
    Age 38
    During this period Pasolini frequently traveled abroad: in 1961, with Elsa Morante and Alberto Moravia to India (where he went again seven years later); in 1962 to Sudan and Kenya; in 1963, to Ghana, Nigeria, Guinea, Jordan and Israel (where he shot the documentary, Sopralluoghi in Palestina).
    More Details Hide Details In 1970 he travelled again to Africa to shoot the documentary, Appunti per un'Orestiade africana.
    His first film as director and screenwriter is Accattone of 1961, again set in Rome's marginal quarters.
    More Details Hide Details The movie aroused controversy and scandal. In 1963, the episode "La ricotta", included in the collective movie RoGoPaG, was censored and Pasolini was tried for offense to the Italian state and religion.
  • 1960
    Age 37
    In 1960 he made his debut as an actor in Il gobbo, and co-wrote Long Night in 1943.
    More Details Hide Details Along with Ragazzi di vita, he had his celebrated poetry work Le ceneri di Gramsci published, where Pasolini voiced tormented tensions between reason and heart, as well as the existing ideological dialectics within communism, a debate over artistic freedom, Socialist realism and commitment.
  • 1957
    Age 34
    In 1957, together with Sergio Citti, Pasolini collaborated on Federico Fellini's film Le notti di Cabiria, writing dialogue for the Roman dialect parts.
    More Details Hide Details He also co-wrote the dialogues of Fellini's La dolce vita.
  • 1955
    Age 32
    His first novel, Ragazzi di vita (English: Hustlers), was published in 1955.
    More Details Hide Details The work had great success but was poorly received by the PCI establishment and, most importantly, by the Italian government. It initiated a lawsuit for "obscenity" against Pasolini and his editor, Garzanti. Though totally exonerated of any charge, Pasolini became a victim of insinuations, especially by the tabloid press.
  • 1954
    Age 31
    In 1954, Pasolini, who now worked for the literary section of Italian state radio, left his teaching job and moved to the Monteverde quarter.
    More Details Hide Details At this point, his cousin Graziella moved in. They also accommodated Pasolini's ailing, cirrhotic father Carlo Alberto, an alcoholic (died in 1958). Pasolini published La meglio gioventù, his first important collection of dialect poems.
  • 1951
    Age 28
    He found a job as a worker in the Cinecittà studios and sold his books in the 'bancarelle' ("sidewalk shops") of Rome. In 1951, through the help of the Abruzzese-language poet Vittorio Clemente, he found a job as a teacher at a secondary school in Ciampino, a suburb of the capital, a long commute involving two train changes, in exchange of a meagre paycheck of 27,000 liras of the time.
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  • 1950
    Age 27
    He was acquitted of both charges in 1950 and 1952. "I came to Rome from the Friulan countryside.
    More Details Hide Details Unemployed for many years; ignored by everybody; driven by the fear to be not as life needed to be". Instead of asking for help from other writers, Pasolini preferred to go his own way. In these years Pasolini transferred his Friulan countryside inspiration to Rome's suburbs, the infamous borgate where poor proletarian immigrants lived in often horrendous sanitary and social conditions. After one year sheltered in a maternal uncle's flat next to Piazza Mattei, Pasolini and his 59-year-old mother moved out to a run-down suburb called Rebibbia, next to a prison (a period briefly described in a 1966 documentary). Mother and son settled down there for 3 years.
    Struggling in an extremely difficult situation, in January 1950 Pasolini moved to Rome with his mother Susanna to start a new life from scratch.
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  • 1949
    Age 26
    In October 1949, when called to declare in the police station, he would not deny the basic fact, for which he talked of a "literary and erotic drive", and cited André Gide, the 1947 Nobel Prize for Literature laureate.
    More Details Hide Details Regardless, Cordovado informed also his superiors, and the regional press stepped in. The headlines were shouted in the streets by the news vendors. According to Pasolini, the whole affair was prepared by the Christian-Democrats with a view to smearing his name ("the Christian-Democrats pulled the strings"), and came to be fired from his job position in Valvasone. Not only that, he was expelled from the Communist Party by the party's Udine section, for which he felt stabbed in the back. He addressed a critical letter to the head of the section (and friend) Ferdinando Mautino - named Carlino -, and claimed he was being subject to a "tacticism" of the Communist Party. In the party, the expulsion was opposed by Teresa Degan, Pasolini's colleague in education. She also was addressed a letter by Pasolini, where he showed his regret about himself for being "such a naive, even indecently so". His father broke out in desperate shouts, yelled at his mother Susanna, who in turn locked herself in her bedroom ("she was about to go nuts"). The situation in the family became untenable.
    The local Christian-Democrats took notice. In the summer of 1949, Pasolini was blackmailed by a priest, "either leave politics, or his school career will be ruined," an intermediary went.
    More Details Hide Details Similarly, after some posters were put in the loggia of San Giovanni, Giambattista Caron, a Christian-Democrat deputy, warned Nico Naldini that his cousin Pasolini "should abandon communist propaganda" to prevent "pernicious reactions". A small scandal broke out during a local festival in Ramuscello (September 1949). "A public voice", someone who overheard comments, informed Cordovado, the local sergeant of the carabinieri, on sexual conduct (masturbation) shown by Pasolini with three youngsters aged 16 and younger after dancing and drinking. Cordovado went on to summon the boys' parents, who hesitated, but did not file any lawsuit, despite Cordovado's enthusiasm. However, the sergeant drew up a report, and the informer elaborated publicly on his accusations, sparking a public uproar. The judge of San Vito al Tagliamento charged Pasolini with "corruption of minors and obscene acts in public places" Not only him, but the 16 year-old involved was also indicted.
    In May 1949, Pasolini attended the Peace Congress in Paris.
    More Details Hide Details Observing the struggles of workers and peasants, and watching the clashes of protesters with Italian police, he began to conceive his first novel. Pope Pius XII excommunicated any communist sympathizers from the Church. During this period, while holding a position as a teacher in a secondary school, Pasolini stood out in the local Communist Party section as a skillful writer defying the notion of communism as contrary to Christian values.
  • 1947
    Age 24
    On 26 January 1947 Pasolini wrote a declaration for the front page of the newspaper Libertà: "In our opinion, we think that currently only Communism is able to provide a new culture."
    More Details Hide Details It generated controversy partly due to the fact he was still not a member of the Italian Communist Party (PCI). He was planning to extend the work of the Academiuta to other Romance language literatures and met the exiled Catalan poet, Carles Cardó. After joining the PCI, Pasolini took part in several demonstrations.
  • 1945
    Age 22
    On 30 October 1945, Pasolini joined the pro-devolution association Patrie tal Friul, founded in Udine.
    More Details Hide Details The political status of the region became a matter of contention between different political factions. Pasolini wanted a Friuli based on its tradition, attached to its Christianity, but intent on civic and social progress, as opposed to those autonomists who wanted to preserve their privileges based on "immobilism". He also criticized the Communist Party for their opposition to devolution, and their bet on Italian centralism. He founded the party Movimento Popolare Friulano, but ended up quitting it, persuaded that it had come to be controlled and used by the Christian-Democrat Party in order to counter the Yugoslavians, who in turn were attempting to annex large swaths of the Friuli.
    Six days later Pasolini and others founded the Friulan Language Academy (Academiuta di lenga furlana). Meanwhile, Pasolini's father Carlo Alberto was allowed to Italy from his Kenya's detention period in November 1945 on account of Guido's death.
    More Details Hide Details He settled down in Casarsa, Susanna's home town. Also in November, Pier Paolo Pasolini graduated after completing a final thesis about Giovanni Pascoli's works. In 1946 Pasolini published a small poetry collection, I Diarii ("The Diaries"), with the Academiuta. In October he traveled to Rome. The following May he began the so-called Quaderni Rossi, handwritten in old school exercise books with red covers. He completed a drama in Italian, Il Cappellano. His poetry collection, I Pianti ("The cries"), was also published by the Academiuta.
    On 12 February 1945 his brother Guido was killed in an ambush planted by Italian Garibaldine partisans serving in the lines of Tito's Yugoslavian guerrillas.
    More Details Hide Details The fatal event turned into a harrowing tragedy for mother and son.
  • 1943
    Age 20
    Pasolini tried to remain apart from these events. He, his mother and other colleagues of his taught students unable to reach the schools in Pordenone or Udine starting in October 1943. Others were involved too, but this educational workshop was considered illegal, and broke up in February 1944.
    More Details Hide Details He had his first experience of gay love for one of his students. His brother Guido, aged 19, went on to join the Party of Action and their Osoppo-Friuli Brigade, taking to the bush, near Slovenia.
  • 1941
    Age 18
    After the summer in Casarsa, in 1941 Pasolini published at his own expense a collection of poems in Friulan, Versi a Casarsa.
    More Details Hide Details The work was noted and appreciated by intellectuals and critics such as Gianfranco Contini, Alfonso Gatto and Antonio Russi. His pictures had also been well received. Pasolini was chief editor of the Il Setaccio ("The Sieve") magazine, but was fired after conflicts with the director, who was aligned with the Fascist regime. A trip to Germany helped him also to perceive the "provincial" status of Italian culture in that era. These experiences led Pasolini to rethink his opinion about the cultural politics of Fascism and to switch gradually to a Communist position. In 1942, the family took shelter in Casarsa, considered a more tranquil place to wait for the conclusion of the Second World War, a decision common among Italian military families. In the weeks before the 8 September armistice, Pasolini was drafted. He was captured and imprisoned by the German Wehrmacht, but managed to escape disguised as a peasant, and found his way to Casarsa. Here he joined a group of other young fans of the Friulan language who wanted to give Casarsa Friulan a status equal to that of Udine, the official regional standard. From May 1944 they issued a magazine entitled Stroligùt di cà da l'aga. In the meantime, Casarsa suffered Allied bombardments and forced enrollments by the Italian Social Republic, as well as partisan activity.
    In 1941, together with Francesco Leonetti, Roberto Roversi and others, he tried to publish a poetry magazine, but the attempt failed due to paper shortages.
    More Details Hide Details In his poems of this period, Pasolini started to include fragments in Friulan, a language he didn't speak but learned after he'd begun to write poetry in it. "I learnt it as a sort of mystic act of love, a kind of félibrisme, like the Provençal poets."
  • 1939
    Age 16
    In 1939 Pasolini graduated and entered the Literature College of the University of Bologna, discovering new themes such as philology and aesthetics of figurative arts.
    More Details Hide Details He also frequented the local cinema club. Pasolini always showed his friends a virile and strong exterior, totally hiding his interior travail. He took part in the Fascist government's culture and sports competitions.
  • 1931
    Age 8
    Pasolini began writing poems at the age of seven, inspired by the natural beauty of Casarsa. One of his early influences was the work of Arthur Rimbaud. In 1931, his father was transferred to Idria in the Julian March (now Idrija in Slovenia); in 1933 they moved again to Cremona in Lombardy, and later to Scandiano and Reggio Emilia.
    More Details Hide Details Pasolini found it difficult to adapt to all these moves, though in the meantime he enlarged his poetry and literature readings (Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, Shakespeare, Coleridge, Novalis) and left behind the religious fervour of his early years. In the Reggio Emilia high school, he met his first true friend, Luciano Serra. The two met again in Bologna, where Pasolini spent seven years while completing high school: here he cultivated new passions, including football. With other friends, including Ermes Parini, Franco Farolfi, Elio Meli, he formed a group dedicated to literary discussions.
  • 1926
    Age 3
    In 1926, Pasolini's father was arrested for gambling debts.
    More Details Hide Details His mother moved with the children to her family's house in Casarsa della Delizia, in the Friuli region. That same year, his father Carlo Alberto, first detained and then identified Anteo Zamboni as the would-be assassin of Benito Mussolini following his assassination attempt. At any rate, Carlo Alberto was persuaded of the virtues of fascism.
  • 1923
    Age 0
    His family moved to Conegliano in 1923 and, two years later, to Belluno, where another son, Guidalberto, was born.
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  • 1922
    His parents married in 1921, Pasolini was born in 1922 and named after his paternal uncle.
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