ITALY: Disconcerting Failure

"The more disconcerting I am, the better I like it," Italian Publisher Giangiacomo Feltrinelli once told a friend —and he disconcerted almost everyone. Born into one of Milan's wealthiest families, he was an avowed Socialist at the age of 20 and two years later became a Communist. But Feltrinelli scored his only real success as a capitalist publisher. In 1957 he smuggled the manuscript of Doctor Zhivago out of Russia, and published it in defiance of intense Soviet and local party pressures. After the Zhivago furor, Feltrinelli drifted further leftward, becoming a financial angel of Italy's militant Maoists and...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!