Italian Author and Literary Critic. She rose to great acclaim for her autobiographical novel "Deviazione" (1979), which recounts her experiences in Germany during World War II. Born Lucette Mangione of Italian parents, her father owned a building company who also served as an Italian military airplane pilot during World Wars I and II. In 1938 she moved to Rome, Italy with her family where she attended the University of Rome. After the fall of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini in 1943, she moved with her family to Bassano del Grappa where her father worked for the pro-Mussolini puppet state Republic of Salò. It was there she first learned about the atrocities in the Nazi concentration camps and she left her fascist roots and travelled to Germany to determine if the stories were true. She took job as a factory worker in Germany and was sent to a labor camp at the Siemens plant, and later at the IG Farben plant in Frankfurt. There, she was exposed to the cruel reality of oppression and exploitation carried on in the camps which drove her to take an active part in the resistance against the Nazis. She supported the Russian prisoners in solidarity with their plight and participated in a strike organized by the French resistance. She was imprisoned and attempted suicide but was released and sent to Italy. While passing through Verona, she realized that she could not return to her previous life and discarded her documents. She then joined a group of deportees being sent to Germany, and ended up in the Dachau concentration camp, escaping during an air raid and began the nomadic life of a clandestine vagrant. On February 27, 1945 she was helping rescue the wounded buried under the rubble of a bombed building in Mainz when a wall crumbled on top of her and was critically injured, damaging her spine which caused permanent paralysis to both legs. Following the war, she returned to Italy and resumed her education and earned degrees in literature and philosophy. Her other published works include "Idilli in coro" (1951), "Finché la testa vive" (1964), "Nucleo zero" (1981), "Partiranno" (1986), and "Ultima luna" (1993). During her career, she also contributed articles to numerous newspapers and magazines. She died at the age of 75.
Bio by: William Bjornstad