Racism, Italian Style

David Sharp

In recent decades, Italy has experienced a massive and radical shift in its migration pattern; whereas historically a massive emigration movement sent millions upon millions of Italians to all corners of the world, there is currently a major influx of foreigners pouring into the nation in hopes of increased opportunities and better lives.  Currently, an estimated four to five million immigrants live in Italy, or approximately seven percent of the entire population.[1] This change has occurred swiftly, and, not surprisingly, opposition has surfaced through xenophobic reactions and attitudes.  Immigration is rapidly changing the fabric of a largely Catholic and traditional society, and this has not necessarily been embraced by the Italian populace as an evolution in the nation’s history or as the inevitable consequence of an increasingly diasporic and globalized world.

Indeed, there have been ongoing and extreme measures to limit the rights of immigrants which seem astonishingly xenophobic and intolerant.  Some notable efforts to thwart multiculturalism include attempts to illegalize the wearing of face-covering veils by Muslim women,[2] the deliberate profanation of a future mosque site in Bologna by parading pigs on the land,[3] and a drive to identify and expel as many non-Europeans as possible from Italian towns during the Christmas season.[4] Some initiatives have attempted to make illegal immigration punishable by up to four years imprisonment, requiring doctors to denounce patients who are in Italy illegally to the police, and establishing separate classrooms for Italian and immigrant children.[5] These proposals apparently have the support of many Italian citizens.  Still, they are even more alarming because they are movements officially sanctioned by different municipal governments and political parties, including those that influence and decide on national policies for the entire country as part of Italy’s current center-right government.  As a case in point, the current government’s Minister for Institutional Reforms, Umberto Bossi, is also the long-time secretary of the prominent and notoriously anti-immigration political party, the Northern League, which has spearheaded many of these particular efforts and more.  Moreover, several other prominent positions of power in the nation are held by party members, including the Italian Minister of the Interior, Roberto Maroni, and the presidents of two Italian provinces.

"Guess Who's Last?" A Northern League poster that uses racist imagery to promote its agenda.

The Northern League draws its support, and certainly due criticism as well, for its unyielding stance towards immigration. Yet its intolerant stance towards immigration and immigrants is undergirded and supported by a fundamentally alarmist fear of immigrants as a threat to the nation’s stability and security.[6] Certainly the Italian word used to refer to foreigners, extracomunitario,[7] itself conjures the idea of something alien, almost extraterrestrial, while denoting a sense of both political and social exclusion.  It is a word commonly used throughout Italy to denote those who are within the European community and those who are without, or more bluntly, those who belong there and those who do not.  The country has one of the most restrictive citizenship laws in the West[8], and with such prevalent attitudes and restrictive legislation, it is impossible to predict whether initiatives against immigrants will ultimately abate or continue in the future.  It is clear that Italy is currently not an overly hospitable society to its immigrant population.

The 2002 novel Involuntary Witness by Italian judge and author Gianrico Carofiglio takes this society as its basis in a legal thriller exploring the reaches of such pervasive bigotry and anti-immigrant hostility.  Carofiglio’s novel keenly dissects the racist attitudes of a predominantly monocultural society to detail how these hostile anti-immigrant attitudes infiltrate the nation’s official institutions, or more specifically, its legal system.  Involuntary Witness depicts the plight of a rather helpless immigrant, Abdou Thiam, a 31 year-old Senegalese peddler living in the southern Italian city of Bari.  He is accused of barbarically murdering a boy and then throwing his body down a well.  While he is entitled to a trial and representation by an attorney, an antagonistic society appears disposed to condemn him to a life in prison well before the case is even brought to court.  The carabinieri and public prosecutor’s office have asserted that he is the definitive culprit, and his first state-appointed attorney demonstrates utter disinterest and detachment from the case from the onset.  Thiam’s girlfriend, an Egyptian, thus appeals to the attorney Guido Guerrieri in desperation.


Avvocato Guerrieri has a reputation for representing an array of objectionable clients, including known drug dealers and crime bosses in Bari and the surrounding provinces.  As the narrator of the entire story, Guerrieri initially appears indifferent about the innocence or guilt of his clients; he approaches his career with disinterest, a mere job to be completed, but never as a vocation or a mission. With Thiam, however, Guerrieri immediately takes a special interest in both the client and in the suit.  Guerrieri’s interest in the case is inexplicable even to himself, as he sees it as a lost cause ab initio, and it is in no way financially lucrative.  Girded only by intuition – a mere impression – Guerrieri nonetheless has a genuine perception that his client is innocent.  While he never articulates any such notion overtly, Guerrieri seems to empathize with Thiam’s desperation and dejection.  The attorney has recently endured a debilitating nervous breakdown following an unsolicited separation from his wife, and his own life has been tumultuous for months.  Thiam’s case comes to Guerrieri at the brink of intense personal uncertainty and during a moment of continual introspection and possible transformation, and the trial may represent an opportunity to fill a personal void, to emerge from an emotional abyss, and to compensate for crippling insecurities.  Guerrieri is compelled to defend Abdou Thiam, and he determines to represent the defendant against all reasonable expectations.

Indeed, Guerrieri is piercingly aware of the weight of impressions in his society.  He begins by confronting his own prejudices as he approaches the case and meets his client.  Consequently, he describes his preliminary impressions and then scrutinizes their soundness.  Initially Guerrieri is surprised by the poise and beauty of the woman, Abajaje, who appeals to him on behalf of the accused.  He considers her with wonder as she addresses him, observing “[t]hat face of a Nubian princess contracted with the effort of fighting back tears.”[9] He concedes that she is beautiful, aristocratic, austere and imposing and moreover disarming because she breaks his stereotypical perception of an African.  He notes his own wonder and surprise as she conforms to and counters his expectations:

With foreign clients I was always in doubt as to whether to use tu or lei. From the way this woman said “Thank you, Avvocato” I knew I could address her as lei without any fear of not being understood.  When I asked her what the problem was she handed me some stapled sheets…Drugs, was my immediate thought.  Her man was a pusher… We all of us go by stereotypes.  Anyone who denies it is a liar.  The first stereotype had suggested the following sequence: African, precautionary detention, drugs.  It is usually for this reason that Africans get arrested.  But straight away the second stereotype came into play.  The woman had an aristocratic look and didn’t seem like a drug-pusher’s moll. [10]

As Guerrieri acknowledges, stereotypes and racist impressions have preconfigured his meeting with Abajaje, and he believes that these same prejudices exist universally.  When he actually encounters Abdou Thiam, he is also confronted with a mélange of expected stereotypes and surprising contrasts to his own perceptions.  Indeed, Guerrieri is struck by the fact that, like Abajaje, Thiam is attractive.  He remarks that Thiam is “a strikingly handsome man, with the face of a film star and liquid eyes.”[11] It is a frank description that the Italian narrator admits without reticence.  Yet more interestingly, it suggests that Guerrieri views Thiam through a lens that renders him as distant; like a movie star, there is something that makes him flat or perhaps inert, and ultimately unapproachable.

While Thiam’s appearance surprises Guerrieri, the attorney is likewise struck by Thiam’s fluid command of Italian; while he remarks that it does not equal Abajaje’s, it is still indicative of his intelligence and an ability to adapt to his environment.  Moreover, as Guerrieri prepares Thiam for his trial, he notes Thiam’s keen comprehension and ability to follow his explicit instructions, and even marvels that he “didn’t need things said twice.”[12] Like the reader, Guerrieri is repeatedly surprised by Thiam’s multidimensionality.  He was a school teacher in Senegal, although in Italy he is reduced to hawking illegal, counterfeit items to tourists on the beach.  During the defense hearing it emerges that Thiam and his African friends purchase and consume hashish acquired in mass in Naples; yet they never distribute it to others.  Most surprisingly, it is revealed that Thiam has a residency permit in his possession.  Though he lives on the margins of this society, he is not an illegal alien living clandestinely within the country. Thiam thus comes across as a multifaceted individual and not a mere stereotype; crossing between the boundaries of legality and illegality, he embodies contradictions as do real individuals, and accordingly conforms to and simultaneously shatters the narrator’s assumptions about an immigrant.

Guerrieri’s own impressions and expectations when meeting these clients reveals that even a sympathetic individual has racist principles underlying his perception of African immigrants.  In addition, the highly-educated Guerrieri never acknowledges that his own ideas distill an entire continent into a single embodiment, that of dark-skinned individuals, and effectively raze considerable differences in the various countries’ histories, cultures and languages, not to neglect religions.  Indeed, in a nation where Islam is often viewed as suspect, it is astonishing, and perhaps providential, that Thiam’s probable religious beliefs or background never enters the discussion whatsoever for Guerrieri or during the trial.[13] If Guerrieri has a reductively generic idea of Africa, then less educated citizens certainly can be expected to hold similar views.  Not surprisingly, there is literally no mention whatsoever by the narrator, and evidently in society’s purview, that Italy endeavored to profit from and colonize different African nations within the lifetime of many of those still alive today.  Thus Italy’s own recent political history and the consequences this could have yielded on its current demographic are completely elided in the text.


Avvocato Guerrieri at least demonstrates a willingness to confront his perceptions and beliefs, yet he describes a society where the operative perception of immigrants, and particularly Africans, is one of scorn, dismissal and hatred.  When initially discussing the case with Cervellati, the public prosecutor, Guerrieri attempts to introduce his client using the honorific “Signor.” He states, “Mr. Prosecutor, I have been appointed by Signor Thiam, whom you will certainly remember …” Yet the powerful and educated public prosecutor abruptly interrupts him with “You mean the nigger who killed the boy in Monopoli.”[14] Cervellati reduces Thiam to a position he sees as inferior to them both with his vitriolic use of language.  Throughout his narrative Guerrieri notes that both the most educated and the most vulgar strata of society rampantly use this epithet when referring to Africans.  Yet the use of such derogatory language is symptomatic of profound and operative racism that permeates the perception and treatment of immigrants; Guerrieri immediately recognizes this racism tinges all the evidence assembled against his client by the prosecution.  As Guerrieri undertakes to defend Thiam, he quickly concludes that the Cervellati has no directly incriminating evidence against Thiam, but instead considerable decontextualized circumstantial evidence and conjectures which are being exhibited as incontrovertible facts.  Nonetheless the public prosecutor has mounted a solid case against Thiam implicating him as the only suspect based on these distorted facts and testimonies.

Guerrieri relies on this premise in preparing his defense for Thiam, for he has literally no tangible evidence to assemble otherwise; due to the itinerant lives of other Africans, nobody can attest to Thiam’s whereabouts on the day of the murder a year after it has occurred, and there is ostensibly no witness to bring to Thiam’s defense.  Even his girlfriend, Abajaje, has left him behind and returned home hurriedly since employing Guerrieri.  The only prospect for acquittal is to assault the prosecution’s case for its flaws and to change the mindset of those who will judge the case.  Yet the public prosecutor unequivocally discourages Guerrieri from attempting to exonerate Thiam Guerrieri.  He even urges Guerrieri to opt for a shortened trial that will not qualify for an acquittal but instead bargain for a shortened sentence. When Guerrieri unexpectedly does request a full trial, he is instantly met with undisguised irritation and aggression by the prosecutor and other members of the judiciary who will attack him repeatedly throughout the trial.  Guerrieri’s decision to defend Thiam is thus seen as divisive, and makes him a pariah among his colleagues and superiors.  Guerrieri knows that both he and his client will meet with redoubled antagonism and derision as he attempts to demonstrate that that there is reasonable doubt about the accuracy and objectivity of the evidence, and Thiam’s freedom hinges on his ability to expose the evidence as skewed, and to dispel the fable of objectivity.  This involves keenly examining the evidence from different angles and approaching the opposing witnesses in ways that will evince their bias.  More challenging for Guerrieri will be influencing the jury to reconsider their notions, which likely maintains similar or identical beliefs and opinions about the immigrant defendant.

The most significant element of evidence in the case is the eyewitness testimony from the owner of a bar located on the beach where the child had last been seen playing.  This onlooker, Antonio Renna, is utterly loathsome to Guerrieri from the start as he intuits that Renna views all immigrants indistinctly and with resentment.  Guerrieri describes him with thinly-veiled disgust, applying yet another pre-existing filter in his assessment, that of a sordid and corrupt boor, stating: “[Renna] crossed the courtroom looking at [Guerrieri] with a cocksure air.  He had the look of a peasant.  A stumpy figure, checkered shirt with a 70s-style collar, swarthy complexion and crafty eyes.  Not at all an engaging craftiness either, rather suggesting first chance I get, I’ll cheat you.”[15] Guerrieri detests Renna’s inflated confidence and contempt for him as a lawyer, but must expose his unreliability as a witness as impersonally as possible.  When Guerrieri examines him, he wisely masks any personal antipathy in his questioning.  He knows that assaulting his character or branding him as a racist will not sway the judges or the jury in considering the validity of his testimony.  Moreover, Renna does not even consider censoring his bigotry as something to disguise; when first asked to name the nationalities of his bar patrons he states, “I don’t know.  They’re all niggers.”[16] Guerrieri recognizes that he must demonstrate that this innate racist perspective has rendered Renna an unreliable witness.

Consequently, Guerrieri resorts to a rather unexpected tactic based on a somewhat providential intuition that enables him to demonstrate that Renna is an unintentionally, not deliberately, disreputable witness in the case.  He consequently presents Renna with a series of ten photographs with images of black immigrants and simply asks him: “Do you recognize anyone in these photographs?”  Renna is certain not to know anybody, and notes “I don’t think I do.  There are so many of them who come by my bar.” Guerrieri continues, stating “…you remembered Signor Thiam perfectly well, did you not? …If you saw him, in person or in a photograph, you would recognize him, wouldn’t you?”  Renna never vacillates and instead answers affirmatively.  It is at this moment that Guerrieri unveils the piece de resistance in his own arsenal, stating: “You know, Signor Renna, I put that last question to you because, of the ten photographs you looked at, two show the face of Signor Thiam, the defendant.”  Renna never reconsiders, but instead provides Guerrieri with more armament in his case, becoming more virulent and stating: “Why they’re all the same, these niggers.  How can I tell, after a year…?”[17]

"Immigrants, please don't leave us alone with the Italians"

During this incident, Guerrieri demonstrates incontrovertibly that the key witness Renna begrudges the immigrants who frequent his bar, and that he uniformly considers them a nuisance.  Thiam is merely one of many he resents.  His tirade waxes in the face of the attorney’s ploy, and he rages: “They [immigrants] interfere, they interfere, and how! I call [the municipal police], but d’you think they come?”[18] Renna can no longer maintain the semblance of composure during the questioning; as he vents his annoyance and misgivings about the police in general, he does more to destabilize his own solidity as a witness than Guerrieri ever could have done by attacking his character.  Renna’s inability to correctly identify the suspect in two photos while in his very presence weakens the credence of his testimony considerably.  In addition, it erodes the prosecution’s very foundation since his statement was the primary and most damning evidence against Thiam.  Guerrieri, reviled for his defense of Thiam by the entire judiciary, is suddenly extolled in the newspapers for his acuity, and his confidence and surety too increases.

With this success, Guerrieri proceeds with his defense.  He summarizes the significance of this event and concludes his argument by attempting to convince the jury and judges that, like Albert Einstein suggested, “It is the theory that determines what we observe.”[19] He also resorts to a Chinese adage to make his point asserting, “Two-thirds of what we see is behind our eyes.”[20] Guerrieri compellingly argues that a schema is necessary for stringing together and interpreting evidence; it is also an ironic reversal that Guido introduces both a Chinese proverb and a theory by a prominent Jew – both non-Italian sources – to sway the court and impugn the prosecution’s evidence as completely circumstantial.[21] Guerrieri adroitly explains that the prosecution, the witnesses, the family of the victims, – essentially everybody – in the courtroom wanted to find the perpetrator quickly and definitively.  He describes how this “unintentionally” created a schema which enabled Abdou Thiam to be inserted as the likely culprit.  Guerrieri thereby uncovers gaps in the evidence, including the omission of relevant or mitigating information, inconsistencies in the reports taken by investigators (including extremely stilted  and artificial official language in statements purportedly provided to the letter by  coarse witnesses or suspects), and ultimately reveals various ways that facts were skewed in favor of a particular outcome or theory.  Guerrieri concludes by presenting a persuasive theory of an “involuntary, false witness,” or quite simply one who did not intentionally lie, but nonetheless failed to tell the truth.  Guerrieri instead introduces a “… possibility which the public prosecutor did not take into consideration, but which you [the jury] must take into very close consideration.  That of a witness who gives a certain version of the facts in the erroneous conviction that it is true.”[22] As such, Renna’s once influential account suddenly loses its authority and the case against Thiam becomes more assailable.

Assuredly, Guerrieri is persuasive and he continually chips away at the solidity of the prosecution’s case, the opposing council’s nerves, and likewise at the prejudices of those who are judging his client.  Nevertheless, the pending outcome of the trial remains uncertain and suspenseful.  From the onset, the attorney reiterates the virtual impossibility of acquittal as the unlikely odds are continually mentioned.  At one point they are even quantified numerically as a “5 or 10 percent chance at best”[23] and knowing the disposition of those judging the case, Thiam’s guilt appears as a fait accompli.  Tension builds continually as Guerrieri observes and frets about minute details within the courtroom; he constantly reads the judges’ and jury’s body language, observes their faces, imagines the content of their murmurs and surmises a priori what this portends for Thiam.  Moreover, Guerrieri invariably presents his own efforts as somewhat underprepared and unreflective.  While his arguments are analytical and rational, Guerrieri often seems to be guided by faith in the righteousness of his position.  His own position that Thiam is innocent is merely an intuition, and dismantling the prosecution’s case is only intended to posit reasonable doubt about guilt, not to provide hard evidence of innocence.  Consequently, the reader also teeters between optimism and pessimism, hoping that Thiam will be exonerated but expecting this fantasy to be shattered.  Indeed, to believe that Guerrieri’s argument is sufficient to overcome adversity, annihilate the sway of racism and save Thiam from a perpetual jail sentence seems impossibly naïve.  Yet the indisputability and logic of Guerrieri’s argument provides more than a glimmer of hope and promise.

Accordingly, when a verdict of innocence is ultimately pronounced, it is astonishing.  Guerrieri and Thiam rejoice together, “face to face, very close, the bars between us.”  Guerrieri describes Thiam’s reaction, stating:  “His eyes were moist, his jaw set, the corners of his mouth trembling.  My own face was not very different, I think.”[24] Guerrieri’s words here are both literal and symbolic.  Indeed, it is the second reference to their similarity, as he shortly before admits to a friend that he “recognizes something of [himself]”[25] in Thiam, and thus admits an affinity for him.  With vastly different consequences on their lives, both had recently been abandoned by their companions, became alienated from their peers and society and became desperate and suicidal; Guerrieri does not state so, but he likely recognizes the very humanness of Thiam through familiarity.  During the trial, they have separately and individually endured the most hopeless and darkest hours of their lives; yet each has needed the other to embrace unlikely hope and promise future for the future.  Guido’s investment in Abdou Thiam has brought him some relief from his own situation, and enabled him to reassess his own worth and values.  Consequently, for Guerrieri the victory is a culmination in the process of reassembling a fragmented identity and becoming holistic again.  The trial has enabled him to find strength and to redress errors from his past, including reconciling with his ex-wife.  Meanwhile Thiam stands at the threshold of an uncertain future that, at least for the moment, guarantees his liberty.

With this conclusion, the lingering question remains concerning Thiam’s actual innocence or guilt. Whether or not Thiam represents a threat to the nation’s security is a matter that quickly becomes less prominent or even relevant in Involuntary Witness. While it is reassuring that his trial presents hope that a national mindset is evolving, Carofiglio instead emphasizes an important point from his standpoint as a judge.  In guaranteeing the accused a right to a fair trial, that is, by allowing the judiciary process to unfold as it is legally designed to, justice has indeed been served.  Carofiglio suggests that as Italy’s population changes, entrenched prejudices must be subverted and cast aside in order to ensure the fairness and objectivity of its most important institutions.  It still remains to be seen if the Italy outside the pages of the novel will rise to the challenge.

[1] See “Immigrants Forced to Margins of Italian Society” available at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=99255579&sc=emaf

[3] See “Italian Far-Right Uses Pig to ‘Desecrate’ Future Mosque Site”  available at http://blogs.reuters.com/faithworld/2007/11/14/italian-far-right-uses-pig-to-desecrate-future-mosque-site/

[4] See “Italy’s Northern League in ‘White Christmas’ Immigrant Purge”  available at http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/italys-northern-league-in-white-christmas-immigrant-purge-1823231.html

[5] See “Immigrants Forced to Margins of Italian Society” available at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=99255579&sc=emaf

[6] As noted in a recent NPR news series, Jean-Leonard Touadi, a native of the Republic of the Congo and the first black member of the Italian parliament, has asserted that “insensitive language” has incremented Italians’ fear of immigrants.  He asserts that migrants in Italy are perceived as criminals or as potential criminals and are central to an overwhelming sense of Italians’ insecurity in Italy.  See “Immigrants Forced to Margins of Italian Society” available at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=99255579&sc=emaf for entire story.

[7] On the RAI Italica website, Francesco Bruni explains that the recently coined adjective “extracomunitario” literally denotes things and people that belong or come from outside of the EEC.  In common parlance, it frequently is applied to those coming from outside of the Western European nations or even outside of Italy itself.  See http://www.italica.rai.it/principali/lingua/bruni/schede/extra.htm

[8] See “Immigrants Forced to Margins of Italian Society” available at http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=99255579&sc=emaf

[9] Carofiglio, Gianrico. Involuntary Witness. Translated by Patrick Creagh. London, Bitter Lemon Press, 2005. 37.  It is worth nothing that the attorney’s impressions of an African woman are exoticized and seen through a filter that V.Y. Mudimbe describes as “alterity” or otherness in his The Invention of Africa.  Abajaje is seen not as a real person, but instead as a figure or image, with the possible models being high royalty, a Nubian queen of yore, or pure vulgarity, a prostitute clinging to a drug dealer.  This binary perception guides Guerrieri when he meets the defendant, Abdou Thiam, as well.

[10] Involuntary Witness 32-33.

[11] Involuntary Witness 40.

[12] Involuntary Witness 201.

[13] Figures from the U.S. State Department website state 95% of Senegalese citizens are Muslim.  It is indeed interesting in view of the general distrust towards Islam in Italy, no mention is ever made in the novel about the religion of the immigrants, but instead only to their skin color and their provenance.   See figures at http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2862.htm.

[14] Involuntary Witness 50.

[15] Involuntary Witness 180.

[16] Ibid 181.

[17] Ibid 180-184.

[18] Ibid 182.

[19] Ibid 249.

[20] Ibid 249.

[21] This is also an unexpected reversal for Guerrieri, who employs Chinese proverbs as reinforcement for his own arguments.  Earlier in the novel Guerrieri instead makes a facile observation about stereotypical Chinese pronunciation of the letter “r” in the telephone greeting “pronto [hello]”, that someone Chinese might utter as “plonto.”  He acknowledges, “It wasn’t a very brilliant thought, but it was precisely what passed through my mind at that moment” (165).

[22] Ibid 247.

[23] Ibid 74.

[24] Ibid 266.

[25] Ibid 156.

  1. Pietro said:

    I have to admit i was really disappointed when this article turned into a summary for that book, and i stopped reading (i’d rather read the book before spoiling it while looking for the author’s considerations). I have to point out how Extracomunitario means “coming from outside the European community”, like most of the illegal immigrants coming from the sea in southern Italy are (mostly from South Africa), i don’t really like how the author linked the term to extraterrestrial as to imply Italians don’t consider them human, such judgement should be limited to defining Mexicans as illegal aliens.

    Also, it should be mentioned how Lega nord is a (growing) smaller party, that got his key men in the government out of a pact to ensure Berlusconi the majority and that means only an italian out of 10 agrees with their antics.

    • David S said:

      I thank Pietro for his comment and I appreciate that this journal can also serve as a forum for dialog and the exchange of ideas. It is unfortunate that you did not read the entire essay as my aim was to do more than summarize Carofiglio’s novel, but instead to discuss how he critically examines the danger of racism operating in the Italian legal system and ultimately condemns it. I believe that it was necessary to provide a certain amount of plot summary for those unfamiliar with the novel in order to provide context and to then demonstrate the way that Carofiglio engages with these concerns. I nonetheless believe the article moves beyond a mere book review and delves into issues worthy of further consideration and analysis.

      I think your point that many- and ideally most- Italians do not have negative and xenophobic perceptions of immigrants is indeed accurate and relevant and should be emphasized. However, with the amount of worldwide media attention focused on this problem currently (not just in Italy, but throughout all of Europe), I believe that artistic works considering this situation are extremely important right now for drawing attention to unjust situations and for discussing such problems frankly and widely.

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