Monday, April 15 2024

Michele Zanzucchi. Silence, Word and Light. Listen, Communication and Mass Media.
Collana Universitas, Città Nuova pub. (2012)

Immersed in an age dominated by supersonic speed of technology and mass
media invasion, we tend to confine silence to the margins of our
daily lives; underestimating the fundamental importance that silence has in
the general processes of communication. Michele Zanzucchi’s essay entitled Silence, Word and Light. Listen, Communication and Mass Media has
put light on this matter.

A thought-provoking text with interdisciplinary prospects, which finds
inspiration from Chiara Lubich and broader aspects of Christian thought. A
book which prompts a regenerated ethic vitality, for a new beginning in
communication.

Zanzucchi is a journalist, writer and director of Città Nuova, the monthly
journal of the Focolare Movement, lecturer of mass media and
journalism at the Pontificia Università Gregoriana, Rome and at Sofia University Institute. The author weaves into the binomial
silence-word, a union which is of extraordinary and fruitful
anthropological value, a thick weft which has in the image
metaphorically evoked by the call to the light- something quite significant
and original respect to traditional boundaries in classic debates. It is a
fascinating study which gives a thorough analysis on foundations,
categories and perspectives dear to professionals in the field of mass
media and communication and observes problems and the criticality of
existing scenarios in a renewed way both in internal mechanisms, ways and
contents.

Silence, like word, is the cardinal of communication but here it is not
meant as a negation or worse still, an empty space to fear or to fill at
all costs. The concept here evokes multiple contexts and sentiments which
at times contrast with each other because of its manifold meanings: the
space of irreducible alterity, which exalts the value of listening and
relation; time of waiting and reflection which prepares us for
comprehension; the meeting place with God and other places.

During his book presentation at the Vatican Radio, Zanzucchi stated that
the most profound meaning of silence is evoked by the Christian concept of kenosiand he referred to it in this way, “the silence of God is
not an end in itself but it is a silence which provokes, generates and
allows the word to become word”.

An innovative and well-written guide to professionals of mass media field.
The book is also a message of hope which has in the communication of man
and for man – founded of the primacy of silence over the word – an aim both
possible and desirable, and in harmony with the unexpected topic chosen by
the Pope for the World Communications Day 2012: “Silence and Word: Path of
Evangelization”. An unanticipated and fortuitous coincidence, but above
all, it is a horizon of meaning to regain in order to leave the deafening
noise we have precipitated into our lives.

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