header i-Italy

You chose: ethnic identity

  • Art & Culture
    Joey Skee(November 18, 2010)
    Introductory comments to the Calandra Institute’s November 5th symposium “Hybrid Moments: Independent Music in Italian America.”
  • Two (or perhaps three) people with Italian-sounding last names are simultaneously running for governor of the State of New York. This means that Italian American voters will have to decide between them. My advice to them is find out on which side your bread is buttered and which one of them would butter it better as governor.
  • 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.