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The Honoured Society: The Sicilian Mafia Observed

3.90  ·  Rating Details  ·  100 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
A dissection of the Mafia, past and present, combining history, sociology, suspense, horror, and superb travel writing. Originally published in 1964, Lewis describes how, after Mussolini came close to destroying the Mafia, the U.S. Army returned them to power in 1944. Henceforth, they infiltrated every aspect of Sicilian life, corrupting landowners, the police, the judicia ...more
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Published September 1st 2003 by Eland (first published 1964)
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Maru Kun
Mar 22, 2016 Maru Kun rated it really liked it
“We were a single body…bandits, police and Mafia, like the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost”.
So says Gaspare Pisciotta, the deputy, best friend and in the end Judas to Salvatore Giuliano, the young, handsome, complex and - for a time at least - immensely successful Sicilian bandit pictured on the front cover of the Eland edition of “The Honoured Society”.

To a modern reader the most shocking of many squalid tales in Norman Lewis’ history of the Mafia in post war Sicily is the Portella della G
...more
S.H. Villa
May 17, 2015 S.H. Villa rated it it was amazing
This book is the other half of Jared Diamond's Collapse. Diamond tells us what went wrong in collapsed societies but not who was responsible and how it was a whole population, for example in the case of the Easter Islanders, could acquiesce in what must have been seen as the inevitable end of life as they knew it. Thanks to Norman Lewis, we now know how it's done. Or at least one way. The hard men of Respect simply turned their hard gaze upon someone to arrive at agreement. Backed up with brutal ...more
Catrien Deys
Dec 24, 2015 Catrien Deys rated it really liked it
Lewis' style of writing never disappoints, so reading about the horrors of the mafia is a treat too.
Tiny
Jul 25, 2013 Tiny rated it really liked it
I read this a few years back and am now re-reading. A brilliant (true) story, brilliantly written.
Stevie
Aug 23, 2012 Stevie rated it did not like it
BAWS!!!
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Norman Lewis was a prolific British writer best known for his travel writing. Though not widely known, "Norman Lewis is one of the best writers, not of any particular decade, but of our century", according to Graham Greene.

Lewis served in World War II and wrote an account of his experiences during the Allied occupation of Italy, titled Naples '44. Shortly after the war he produced volumes about Bu
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