We all need heroes

Posted on January 1, 2013

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Rita Levi Montalcini, Nobel Prize winner for Medicine in 1986, is seen at a press conference for her one hundredth birthday, in Rome in 20092012 ended with one of the biggest losses for human kind: the Nobel prize winner Rita Levi Montalcini; neurobiologist and extraordinary woman, she died on 30th December at the age of 103. During this first day of 2013 the mourning still echoes into my mind.
In an era where the concept of woman is related to the concept of exploitation, Montalcini showed us that women are capable of bigger, extraordinary things besides the great talent of showing a vagina, which, by the way, many of us have.
Montalcini is one of those women we should all admire because she showed us the path to the victory; a victory paved with sacrifices, hard work, stubbornness, endless courage and, at last, worldwide admiration. Challenging her father’s beliefs, perfectly harmonized with the (then) chauvinist society, Montalcini’s studies led to the discovery of a phenomenon  according to which tumor creates a nerve-growth factor that affects certain types of cells. Her discovery improved the understanding of tumors and other diseases and represented a massive step forward for medicine.
Nowadays, when I happen to see on TV a woman taking off her bra, I hope she is doing it to light it, protesting against labels and prejudices, but the era of suffragettes is, alas, concluded and the bra is nowadays being taken off only to show off lack of decency.
Pity the country that need heroes, Bertolt Brecht once said but our society needs heroes now more than ever; someone who is able to let us rediscover the qualities we tend to forget, overwhelmed by appearance and empty dialogues. Surrounded by gossip gods and goddesses, famous for anything but a talent, I need a hero to keep my hope high. Another one just left this world and at the moment no one seems suitable to replace her. Goodbye Rita.

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