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Intellectual for the Italian ministry of culture

Massimo Bray, 54, from Lecce in southern Italy, was an academic publisher until standing for parliament as a member of the Centre Left at the last election

Massimo Bray

The new Italian government, cobbled together out of Left and Right after months of wrangling, has begun well, at least in its choice of minister of culture.

Massimo Bray, 54, from Lecce in southern Italy, was an academic publisher until standing for parliament as a member of the Centre Left at the last election. He has written, “Culture and the heritage cannot be treated as ordinary goods, to be bought and sold according to whatever seems most useful at the moment”, and, “In Italy, culture could reacquire the role and prestige that it enjoyed in the past and influence political, social and economic choices”.

He studied in Florence, Naples, Venice, Paris and Simancas in Spain, and has been greeted now as the first intellectual to occupy the ministry since Antonio Paolucci in the 1990s, now director of the Vatican Museums. Bray blogs on the role of culture for the Italian Huffington Post.

Originally published by our Italian sister paper, Il Giornale dell'Arte

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