Paperback. Pub Date: 2000 09 Pages: 224 Publisher: Penguin Classics A chemist by training. Primo Levi became one of the Supreme Witnesses to Twentieth-century atrocity In these haunting reflections inspired by the Elements of the Periodic Table. He Ranges from young love to political savagery; from the inert gas argon - and 'inert' relatives like the uncle who stayed in bed for twenty-two years - to life-giving carbon. 'Iron' honours the mountain-climbing resistance hero who put iron in Levi's student soul. 'Cerium' recalls the improvised cigarette lighters which saved his life in Auschwitz. while 'Vanadium' describes an eerie post-war correspondence with the man who had been his 'boss' there. All are written with characteristically understated eloquence and shot through with deep humanity.