Author(s): Alberto Moravia
Contempt is a picture, frighteningly in its familiarity, of how, in an irremediable instant, love can turn to hate. Molteni, aspirant man of letters, has taken a job screenwriting to support his beautiful wife Emilia. Frustrated by his work, he becomes convinced that she despises him, and relentlessly interrogating her about the true nature of her feelings, he makes his deepest fear (or secret desire) come true. Contempt is an unflinching examination of desperation and self-deception in the emotional vacuum of modern consumer society.
Alberto Moravia (1907-1990) published his first novel, The Time of Indifference, at the age of twenty-three. Banned from publishing under Mussolini, he emerged after World War II as one of the most admired and influential twentieth-century Italian writers. His novels include Two Adolescents, Two Women and The Women of Rome. Tim Parks's books include the novel Destiny and the essay collection Hell and Back. His most recent novel, Judge Savage, was published in the autumn. He lectures at IULM University in Milan.