The fate of the survivors

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This article is published in number 15 of Vanity Fair on newsstands until April 13, 2021

«After having deposited shreds of my autobiography in all my films for years, I decided to write a book where I tell a good portion of my life in the first person. The idea for this book was born in Buenos Aires, while I was testifying in court about my experience of disappeared. Writing and writing I understood that the fate of a survivor is to tell the same story ten, twenty, a thousand times, a personal story that has tragically become collective “, said director Marco Bechis presenting his first novel: The loneliness of the subversive (Guanda Publisher).
I have been writing and talking about books for over thirty years. I have fallen in love many times, with many books, and I remember something of them all. I have something left of each: maybe just a phrase, a character, a place, maybe the cover or the title. Of some I remember especially the tight stomach when you meet a brother, someone who somehow, perhaps obscurely, shares something profound with you. The loneliness of the subversive by Marco Bechis is the last book that has had this effect on me. I read it a few days after it came out, on March 25, and it still hasn’t stopped talking to me. Are we all survivors? Do we all feel guilty about something small or big? And what made us feel this way? In the case of Marco Bechis, the tragic events for which he cannot stop feeling like a survivor, with the duty – and the obsession – to tell forever what happened to him, are enormous: a three-year-old brother who died in chilling circumstances when he was nine and his experience of vanishing when he was twenty. Marco Bechis was kidnapped by the Argentine military in 1977, taken to a secret prison, tortured and finally released through the intercession of his executive father. Reading his story is not just a journey into the darkest time of our recent past, but it makes us understand how art, for those who create, can be born from desperation and fear, and become a destiny..

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