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Transcript of Primo Levi
Primo Levi was an Italian-Jewish writer, chemist, and Holocaust survivor. He was deported to Auschwitz in 1944. Upon his liberation in 1945, he wrote If This Is a Man, The Truce, and The Periodic Table.
Childhood and Growing Up and Such
Primo Levi was born in Turin, Italy in 1919. Levi was enrolled in the Felice Rignon primary school in Turin in 1925. Levi was a soft spoken and shy kid who did extremely well in his studies. For a while, Levi had a long string of absences, since he was being homeschooled by Emilia Glauda and then by Marisa Zini.
In 1930, Levi was enrolled in Massimo d'Azeglio Royal Gymnasium a year before most students were allowed in the school. Levi was the smartest, shortest, and youngest student in his classes. He was also the only Jew in his school, and was bullied greatly for all these reasons.
In December 1941, Levi secretly got a job at asbestos mine at San Vittore where he extracted nickel from the mine spoil. From 1941-1943, Levi worked under a false name as a chemist in northern Italy.
However, in 1942, his father passed away, forcing Levi to leave Turin and his mining for a short while. That same year, Levi went to Milan where he found work in a Swiss firm of A. Wander Ltd on a project to extract an anti diabetic from vegetable matter.
As the town Fossoli went into German control, Jewish people were being deported to different camps. Levi was among the very few (20) alive camp inmates who came out of the camp that had 650 Italian Jews in Levi’s shipment to Auschwitz. Levi’s record number was 174,517.
Levi got affected by scarlet fever at the time his camp was to be liberated by the Red Army. He was taken to the camp's hospital.
On January 18th, 1945, there was an abrupt evacuation of the camps by The Schutzstaffel which was a major paramilitary organization under Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party.
This evacuation resulted due to the approaching Red Army of Soviet Union power. Camp inmates were forced to walk in the long death march in spite of their severe illnesses resulting in the death of most of the inmates.
Levi was liberated on 27 January 1945 but reached Turin not before 19 October 1945. Levi travelled on a circuitous route from Poland, through Bielorussia, Ukraine, Romania, Hungary, Austria and Germany to reach his homeland in Turin through railroad.
Primo Levi, as grateful as he had been for being liberated from the camp, became quite cynical. Levi is quoted in saying: "There is Auschwitz, and so, therefore, there cannot be God." He took several months to recover from the physical (being ill and mal-nourished) and mental trauma, but, eventually, he started writing his books and finding publishers for them.
Those were not the only books Levi wrote. Others include "Survival in Auschwitz", "The Drowned and the Saved", "If Not Now, When?", "The Wrench", and 19 others.
Soo many books
Honors/Awards/Good things that happened after Auschwitz
In 1947, Primo Levi married his wife, Lucia, in September.
In 1948, in October, Levi's first child, Lisa, was born.
In 1963, Levi received his first annual Premio Campiello literary award.
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