«La corte d’appello di Firenze conferma: il N. 44170 è Mario Bruneri». La curiosa vicenda di una memoria contesa tra realtà, tribunali, letteratura e cinema
- court cases
- court cases
There are real-life stories reported in newspapers that arouse in their readers a whirlwind of passions that become over time a sort of obsession. This happens not only in the case of particularly violent or scandalous events that titillate or shock the readers; other cases are the province of civil law. Among such are a few cases of people who have lost their memory. One of the most renowned Italian ‘amnesiacs’ is the hero/villain of the «Bruneri/Canella case», which has inspired not only for psychiatrists but also writers such as Pirandello and Sciascia, as well as a host of playwrights and filmmakers. In the late 1920s a man was found wandering around a cemetery in Turin; when questioned by the police, he seemed to remember nothing, not even his name. The story became a tempting subject for the newspapers when two women identified the man as their husband, thus creating a hypothesis of two alternative identities: was the amnesiac the respectable Professor Giulio Canella or the villainous play-boy, Mario Bruneri? The elements for a novel were ready. As often happens, the case took the name of the main character, or rather, two names. The «Bruneri-Canella case» was born.