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Silvio Berlusconi, infamous former Italian prime minister, dies aged 86

Silvio Berlusconi — Italy’s longest-serving post-war Prime Minister — died on Monday at age 86. Berlusconi was famed, loved and maligned for his many financial scandals and sexual escapades.

In a colorful life, he was one of Italy’s most successful media entrepreneurs, the nation’s richest man, a cruise-ship crooner and a long-time politician.

Columbia University journalism professor Alexander Stille authored the book “The Sack of Rome: How a Beautiful European Country with a Fabled History and a Storied Culture Was Taken Over by a Man Named Silvio Berlusconi.” He joins host Deepa Fernandes to dive into the storied life of a man rarely out of the Italian spotlight.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

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