Carmen is a story of passions, dramas, and even of picaresque adventures and expedients that are
rooted in literary culture, recalling Cervantes and Lope de Vega, both in the same Iberian land.
Between its pages you can breathe the dryness of the Spanish sierra, the smell of the Andalusian flora, the gypsy spices, the sweat, the blood; you may listen to forgotten songs, forgotten guitars,shouts of joy and terror. Mérimée’s eruditism is never pedantic but it gives shape to a living and terrible, all-too-human universe.
There is a fire that animates this world, a focal point around which everything seems to come alive, and it is Carmen precisely, a woman whose name is already poetry.

Carmen bewitches, seduces, corrupts; her dark fascination is linked to esotericism, to magic, an it feeds on a taste for the grotesque, for what is wrong. She reads the cards, predicts the future or, rather, guides the destiny.
The whole narrative could in fact be read as a path of corruption of the naive Don José, until the final redemption.
It is difficult to judge her, to crush her under a univocal judgment.
She doesn’t even seem human, but another creature, wild and independent, natural, halfwa between a sorceress and a nymph. She is called “beauté étrange et sauvage”, she is compared to a chameleon, accompanied b jasmine, by cassia flowers, as if her place were not among humans but among the scented bushes of Andalusia instead.

— Lettering EdoardoMeda — Poetry EdoardoAngrilli — Carmen Léa Geoffroy —Traduction Passerini Andrea