Eugenio Corti, The Red Horse (1983)

Eugenio Corti, The Red Horse (1983), 1015p.

The Red Horse is an epic novel that follows a family of industrials, the Riva family, in Nomana starting from the end of May 1940 through World War II and the new democratic Italy.

The book is divided in three parts:

  • The Red Horse,
  • The Pale Horse, and
  • The Tree of Life.
  • The book is a metaphore of the genesis of the new democratic Italy that arose out of the ashes of the chaos of pre-fascist, fascist and war-torn Italy. The new Italy is governed by division and loss of conservative Christian values and the question is posed by Michele Tintori if the chaos is a result of this loss.

    Corti writes his novel with a simple world view: his experiences in Russia have convinced him that communism is hell on earth, and even greater threat to the Christian order than fascism had been. The only path out of the inhumanity of the war and post-war chaos is the Christian-Democratic order. The pillars of this Christian-Democratic order are the conservative church of Rome and the industrialist elite. The communist, socialist and liberal forces do not see the threat of their progressive ideas because they are ignorant about the evils of anti-Christian, i.e. communist, powers.The Red Horse is a fabulous and epic story about the genesis of the new Italy, but it is dominated by this simple monolithic analysis of political and social opinions in its time.


  • Manno Riva, dies as an officer in the new Italian army that fight along the Allied armies in occupied Italy.
  • Ambrogia Riva, an industrialist and marries Green Eyes Fanny and succeeds his father.
  • Michele Tintori, the writer and Christian Democratic activist;
  • Alma Riva, sister of Ambrogia and wife of Michele Tintori.
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