After the success of Le donne non invecchiano mai (Women never get older), Iaia Caputo turns her acerbic attention to the “enemy camp,” men.
Men don’t talk. Men don’t talk because they don’t know how to talk about themselves. Men recognize themselves as males, and within the masculine “community,” they find a code of expression which constantly validates their self-identity according to outdated, even archaic, precepts. This identity concerns camaraderie and divvying up roles or power through war. Iaia Caputo records how male protagonists are surprisingly impassiveness when seeking to express themselves about violence against their children, women, and “enemies.” She investigates the progressive emasculation of the male figure and how violence protects it in this compromised universe, now weak and hence threatening. She further decodes the gestures which have characterized politics in the last 20 years. Caputo immerses her readers in the arrogance, vulgarity and linguistic choices used to create the enemy. And once again there is an aura of war surrounding the political arena, a solidity sought within an ancient, entirely male nucleus, where seeking one’s prey is the only real possible objective, be it a scantily-clad TV starlet or some other adversary.
The regime of Italy’s Second Republic is challenged by a male crisis and an equally strong reaction to the crisis. A civil attitude is being re-established that harks back to a barbaric theatre of old men, incapable of procreation.
Iaia Caputo quotes the news, media, and interviews; she listens and reflects and then she places all this material within an old-world context, such that Medea’s jealousy and revenge, or and Kronos’s murdered children unexpectedly take on a contemporary relevance. It is as if the return to “we are all men” were justified by an ancient tradition boiled down to its raw elements.
This is a most vigorous polemic on politics, culture, and masculine society.