Michela Murgia who died from cancer on 10th August 2023.

Italy mourns novelist Michela Murgia

Culture News

Today, Italy mourns left-wing novelist, playwright and journalist Michela Murgia, who has died at the age of 51 after a battle against cancer.

The left-wing Sardinian writer frequently spoke out a many issues, including euthanasia and LGBTQ+ rights.

Murgia was the winner of the prestigious Premio Campiello literary prize in 2010. She announced she had a fourth-stage kidney tumor in an interview with Corriere della Sera in May.

In the same interview she said her wish was to die when Premier Giorgia Meloni was no longer at the helm of the executive. She said she considered Meloni’s government to be “fascist”. At the time of the interview Meloni replied that she too hoped Murgia would live long enough to see a different premier.

The premier was among many figures to pay tribute to Murgia on Friday.

“I want to express my sincere condolences to the family and friends of the writer Michela Murgia,” Meloni said via Twitter.

“She was a woman who fought to defend her ideas, even if they were notoriously different from mine, and I have great respect for that”.

Alexander Zan, a gay politician with the centre-left Democratic party (PD), who drafted a law that would have criminalised homophobia, said: “We will always fight together, because you will always be there and we will win.”

Who was Michela Murgia?

Born in the Sardinian town of Cabras in 1972, Murgia made her literary debut in 2006 with the novel Il Mondo Seve Sapere (The World Must Know). It was a satire about exploitation in a telemarketing call centre. It was made into a play of the same name and adapted for the 2008 film Tutta la Vita Davanti (Whole Life Ahead).

Her 2009 novel, Accabadora, won several awards including the Campiello and the Mondello International Literary Prize.

Last month she married the actor and director Lorenzo Terenzi.

Her funeral takes place Saturday at Rome’s the Basilica of Santa Maria in Montesanto.

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