The Role of the Community College
Tom Verso's articles make an interesting and significant response to the discussion started by Anthony Tamburri, especially in terms of the rise of the community college, and its new role in replacing the old trade union schools. My grandfather learned diesel mechanics at such a school.
Delillo's Underworld shows us the psychological impacts of the economic rise of some Italian Americans, while others, as is probably true of many American ethnic groups, remain behind. But the point I think is to change hearts and minds; simply to attain access to the priviledged life of a given class will not be right to effect the change in perception of Italian Americans I think Tamburri talks about.
The role of the Catholic Church and its institutions, particularly its schools, used to be to provide a community where the needs of the IA community could be provided for. Catholic schools held the same "open admissions" policy the community college I work for does.
But can the new Italian immigrant or scholarly emigre (and I hope you can come to some of our conferences and meet these folks) count on the same supports ? Where ? Should the role of the community college be to do the same?