Tag Archives: satire

How to be a Fascist


My latest translation from the Italian – published by Pushkin Press – is out on Thursday 16th January: Michela Murgia’s How to be a Fascist.

How to be a fascist michela murgia book cover

Democracy is difficult, flawed and unstable. It involves barely distinguishable political parties taking part in lengthy, overcomplicated and expensive decision-making processes. Trying to engage so many people with political issues seems to lead only to complexity and disagreement. So why bother? Doesn’t fascism guarantee a more effective and efficient management of the state?

In this short, bitingly ironic book, Michela Murgia explores the logic that is attracting increasing numbers of voters to right-wing populism. Ending with a ‘fascistometer’ to measure the reader’s own authoritarian inclinations, How to be a Fascist is a refreshingly direct, polemical book that asks us to confront the fascist in our governments, in our societies and in our own minds.




After our World Cup crazed news reporters discovered a community of England residents who support another team, we have heard rumours of an even smaller group of people who do not support anyone. It appears, in fact, that they do ‘not care about football, especially not the World Cup’.

Our reporters have tried infiltrating this loose, non-organised group, but have so far not been able to find any significant representative, even though they have searched in pubs, bars, clubs, city squares, town squares, cinemas, gyms, student unions, or any other place that might have a screen (in case they miss a crucial mis-call on the referees behalf, you understand). So we’re not entirely sure who we’re quoting above.

We asked members of the public to comment on the discovery, and were met, understandably, with disbelief. ‘So what do they do every Sunday’, asks Sarah McFooty, ‘and every four years, over summer?’. Andy O’Soccer expressed concern that this group might pose a threat ‘to the sanctity of our nation and our boys. Our boys are out there on the field fighting for democracy, after all’.

Experts claim that the phenomenon can be relatively widespread, but ultimately harmless – until those affected sigh, mumble, mutter or express boredom in any way. Strong reactions may increase in case of trying to justify their stance by referring to social or ethical concerns, or some other poor excuse.

More on this as it develo– OH COME ON, THAT WAS BLATANTLY A FOUL.

NaPoWriMo Day 11 – Cecco Angiolieri


Sonnet 82

If ah were fire, ah’d burn t’ world whole;
if ah were wind, ah’d trash it;
if ah were water, ah’d drown it;
if ah were God, ah’d purrit in th’ole;
if ah were t’ Pope, ah’d be a chuffed soul,
as ah’d let all t’ Christians ‘ave it;
if ah were t’ Emperor, ah’d be reet good at it;
ah’d chop their ‘eads off, t’ one n all.
If ah were death, ah’d go to mi ol’ man;
if ah were life, ah wunt stay wi’ ‘im;
t’ same ah’d do wi’ me ol’ mam.
If ah were Cecco, like wor’ ah was an’ am,
ah’d take all t’ lasses bonny n proper,
and ah’d leave t’ gammy legs and th’old for t’others.


The original Italian (Tuscan) text.

Sonetto LXXXVI

S’i fosse fuoco, arderei ‘l mondo;
s’i fosse vento, lo tempestarei;
s’i fosse acqua, i’ l’annegherei;
s’i fosse Dio, mandereil’ en profondo;
s’i fosse papa, allor serei giocondo,
ché tutti cristiani imbrigarei;
s’i fosse ‘mperator, ben lo farei;
a tutti tagliarei lo capo a tondo.
S’i fosse morte, andarei a mi’ padre;
s’i fosse vita, non starei con lui;
similemente faria da mi’ madre.
Si fosse Cecco com’i’ sono e fui,
torrei le donne giovani e leggiadre:
le zoppe e vecchie lasserei altrui.

Cecco Angiolieri (1260-1313?)