The Italian Minister of Culture called him an “exceptional intellectual”. In his books, Roberto Calasso has extensively treated Nietzsche and Baudelaire.

Milan (AP) – Italian writer and publisher Roberto Calasso has died in Milan at the age of 80. This was announced by the Suhrkamp publishing house.

According to the Italian Ansa news agency, Calasso had been ill for some time. The Florence-born essayist and cultural philosopher celebrated his 80th birthday almost two months ago.

Calasso was also the managing director of Italian literary publisher Adelphi Edizioni. He was accepted there as a young student when the company was founded.

Among other things, Calasso treated the works of other authors in essays and books, such as the French poet and writer Charles Baudelaire or the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. In 1989 he received the Nietzsche Premio Internazionale Federico Nietzsche Prize for his Nietzsche edition. In 2008, he received the science award from the Aby Warburg Foundation. His lecture at the time was “Baudelaire and the cult of images”.

Calasso’s books and texts have been translated into many European languages. In Germany, he published “Der Traum Baudelaires”, “Die Glut” and, more recently in 2019, “The Unnamable Today”. Adelphi Edizioni published the books “Bobi” and “Memè Scianca” shortly before his death.

The editor thanked them on social networks for the many messages of affection after the announcement of Calasso’s death. “There is still a lot to say, but at times like these there is a lack of clarity and silence is preferred.” Italian Culture Minister Dario Franceschini spoke of the loss of a pillar of the Italian publishing industry and called Calasso an “extraordinary intellectual”.