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  • ‘Forgetabout’ Verdi in Milan’s La Scala; more appropriate for southern-Italian Americans would be Michela Musolino’s "L’Evento in Memoria di Pino Veneziano" in Selinunte, Sicily. Southern-Italian Americans confuse the current northern-Italian culture meme (cultivated in public schools, Italian language courses and tourist industry) with their own southern-ancestral history and culture.
  • There is nothing new in certain segments of the community trying to impose their views of what it means to be Italian American on others. This controversy reminds me of recent tensions around the celebration of Columbus Day. On the one hand, identifying with the discoverer of their adopted land was an ideal strategy to gain full inclusion into mainstream America. But on the other hand, in today’s era of multiculturalism with a rhetoric that celebrates cultural diversity, the “discovery” of America by Columbus is equated with the beginnings of the demise of native peoples and their cultures. And there are already many Italian Americans who do not celebrate Columbus Day because of what Columbus has come to represent. It seems to me that this desire to squelch any consideration of the so-called “Guido culture” is a similar attempt by some to impose a uniform identity on a diverse group.