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Indeed, telling this story led Mr. Anton, an associate professor in nonfiction writing at DePaul University, into several unusual realms. One of them, the most central, is the Byzantine blood sport of Romanian politics as it has taken shape since the uprising in which the Communist leader, Nicolae Ceausescu, was overthrown.
Full text of "Ioan P. Couliano -Eros and Magic in the Renaissance"
Another is the arena of esoteric scholarly investigation to which Culianu devoted his life. A third is the extraordinary personality of the brilliant Culianu himself, a man whose personal and intellectual quests embody many of the tragic elements of late 20th-century life. Anton begins with the murder itself, which took place on a bright May afternoon on the campus of the University of Chicago, where Culianu enjoyed a cultish status as a serious student of myths, the occult and magic.
The killing was carried out professionally with a small-caliber Beretta pistol of the sort that can fit into a woman's handbag -- a very uncommon murder weapon. The crime has never been solved, though the accumulation of Mr. Anton's evidence rather strongly suggests that the Romanian security services, or some emigre nationalist sect, engineered it.
Why they would have wanted to do so, and why Culianu, rather than another dissenting Romanian intellectual in exile, was the victim are the central questions posed by Mr. Anton, and he plunges into his subject's biography to find the answer. Culianu, born in in Iasi, a cultural center near the Soviet border, was the child of a formerly aristocratic family of intellectuals and scholars that had been stripped of just about everything by the country's Communist rulers.
Anton's account of the young Culianu's efforts to cope with the barren cultural environment of his own country is utterly absorbing. The security police, known as Securitate, tried to recruit him. He won a scholarship to study in Italy but was turned down for an exit permit. The greater portion of Ted Anton's Eros, Magic and the Murder of Professor Culianu is a biography of the slain historian of religions, a Romanian national defector who was ascending to an accomplished position at the University of Chicago in the footsteps of his countryman Mircea Eliade.
Eros and Magic in the Renaissance
It has been several years since the mysterious murder of the Romanian-born scholar at the University of Chicago. HarryMacDonald Oct 24, You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data. References to this work on external resources. Wikipedia in English 1 Paul Zarifopol.
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