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Franco Venturi

Born in 1914, he lived in Turin where his father Lionello was professor of history of art. In 1932, when Lionello refused to take the oath of loyalty to Fascism, the Venturi family emigrated to Paris where Franco attended the Faculty of Arts and became militant in the anti-Fascist group Giustizia e Liberta headed by Carlo Rosselli. His first work as a historian, the starting point of his research on the Encylopedie. He participated activley in the Italian Resistance. From 1947 to 1949 he lived in the Soviet Union, where he prepared his best-known work on Russian populism. He not only contributed to work on the French and Italian Enlightenment, but also more generally to a conceptualization of the Enlightenment as a European and Atlantic exchange of ideas, as utopia and reform, as the will to transform the world through politics and economics.

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