Italo Calvino was born in Cuba in 1923 of Italian parents, and died in Siena, Italy, last fall, shortly after mailing to us his "Letter from the Sahara," and just weeks before his scheduled Charles Eliot Norton lectures at Harvard. In 1945 he joined the Italian Resistance, and in 1945 the Communist Party together with fellow writers Cesare Pavese and Elio Vittorini, but withdrew in 1957. He is the author of many stories and novels, the most recent of which, If on a Winter's Night a Traveler, and Mr. Palomar, were published in William Weaver's translation by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. In an accompanying letter, Calvino wrote that "Letter from the Sahara" is a page "from life."
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A Letter from the SaharaFiction