La casa in collina

Il circolo dei librofili

La casa in collina

di Cesare Pavese

Riassunto (di Bruno Andrighetto)

  • Corrado is a 40 y.o. high school science teacher (professore) in Torino, during WW2
  • To escape the regular bombing of the city he goes home at nights to a "house in the hills" in Chiero
  • He lives with Elvira, a 40-ish single woman, and her mother. Elvira is hoping Corrado will marry her, but C. appears disinterested
  • A dog named Belbo is his companion (named after his birthplace?)
  • He is a bit of a loner - moving to the country is a convenient excuse for seeking solitude?
  • But he does have some "friends" (really acquaintances) in Chiero: Ponso, Nando, Egle, Fontana etc
  • He has a chance meeting with an old flame he dropped several years earlier - Cate. Cate is a nurse at a hospital in Torino
  • Cate has a son, Dino (short for Corradino) who Corrado suspects could be his son - or perhaps Cate is deliberately trying to make him think that as a pretext for Corrado to take Dino under his wing and give him an education
  • Mussolini is overtrown, but hopes of an end to the war are wishful thinking
  • Fascists propped up in the North by Germans, who now occupy the region
  • Cate is arrested, leaving Dino to be looked after by Corrado and Elvira
  • Teaching is seen as supporting the "Republic", and a teacher is dobbed in for being ant-Fascist
  • Some of Corrado's friends want to join the Partisans
  • Corrado and his friends fear their safety - some flee or join resistance in the mountains
  • Corrado seeks sanctuary at a nearby college/monastery. He enjoys the peace and solitude. There are some other people seeking refuge
  • Dino joins C. at the college
  • C. is threatened to be dobbed in by someone at the college so he goes back to Elvira's, leaving Dino behind
  • Dino runs away to parts unknown. C. hears of this, and returns to the college when he thinks it's safe
  • It turns out that C. was not in danger after all - the Germans weren't after him
  • Thinking the college is no longer safe, C. decides to go back to his birthplace, Belbo - subconsciously wishing to turn back time to before the war? Did he name his dog Belbo as a constant reminder of his past?
  • C. catches a train that takes him part of the way. Has to complete trip on foot due to damaged railway
  • Near home town witnesses an attack (by fascists or partisans? - does it matter?) where innocent people are slaughtered
  • Reaches Belbo (the town), and ponders things ... the war will go on forever ... all wars are civil wars ... wonders what will happen to his friends and Dino ...

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