Articles by: O. C.

  • Dining in & out

    The American Dream of Luigi Diotaiuti

    You were born in the little southern Italian town of Lagonegro, in the Basilicata region. What do you remember of the last day in your hometown before emigrating? And what’s the first thing you remember about America?

    I remember particularly that mom and dad brought me to Sapri to take the train, and it was probably the only time they actually drove me anywhere. It was so beautiful and spontaneous, it was a beautiful day. It was March 1989. I don‘t feel sorry because I left, but I feel more for Basilicata now. I think I do more for the region now than if I were still there. It’s my goal to promote Basilicata all over the world. This is very important to me. I started a nonprofit organization back home called Basilicata: A Way of Living to find the old traditions, the things about Basilicata the world should know, and protect them for a new generation.

    You are very well known chef. Did you dream of being one as a child?
    I don’t know about a dream, but I do know I always wanted to help my mom and on one occasion I was cutting the peppers trying to imitate her and how she made fettuccine. As I was cutting the peppers I said, “Mom I was making my own fettuccini for you!” Growing up on a farm, the only things we bought were sugar, coffee, and salt. We grew or made everything else.

    You studied at the culinary institute in Maratea and then worked in Italy and else- where in Europe, but you said you came to America by chance. How did you get to Washington?

    I think Washington picked me. People would call to ask me to work with them. Because once you reach a certain level, the work will call you. During that time, the late 1980s, someone in Washington called looking for a chef, asking me to find someone. No chef wanted to come and work in the US then, and neither did I. The hot place was Italy, then Spain, France, Switzerland, London. Today, everyone wants to come to the United States. My contact never could find a chef, and two weeks later asked me to come over. Six months later I was here. Washington was really shocking because I did not know the language, and nobody knew that I was coming.

    When did you decide to open your own restaurant?
    When I saw what Washington restaurants were offering, I realized there was so much more I could do. I was going to school to learn English, and I told myself that if there were going to be survivors in those tough times, I would be one. I was going to make it! I realized, you know, there was such a need for good food, and that I should see if I could do better. I promised myself that if could not open my own business in five years, I would go back to Italy. I was able to open Al Tiramisu in three and a half years.

    Why did you call it Al Tiramisu? Tiramisu wasn’t a famous dessert then.
    I wanted a positive name for my restaurant. I debated between Girasole, which means sunflower, and Tiramisu, since they are both positive and fun. Tiramisu means cheer me up. I think the atmosphere of Al Tiramisu is a complete package. It’s small, only eighteen tables, a classic, elegant trattoria where locals go because it’s a good atmosphere with serious food. That’s what I created in DC. When you walk in, you feel like you are in Italy-- the music, the color, the decor, and most important, the food. Everybody works to make sure the food is perfect, fresh, tasty, and kind of like a hug. That’s our secret.

    How did you end up in the American Chef Corps of the White House?
    The group was created by Hillary Clinton when she was Secretary of State to use food for diplomacy. As we say, at the table you ever get old, and you never fight. I believe the Corps has about eighty five chefs all over the US right now. I feel honored and proud, because I think I am the only native Italian member.

    After all these years in Washington, do you think you’ve contributed to the education of Americans about la cucina italiana?

    Absolutely! I remember the days when people would ask what rucola was, or fennel. In the beginning I would spend more time in the dining room presenting our special products, like sardines. I remember when branzino and orata would come from Italy only on Tuesday. Now, it‘s seven days a week. In the last ten years, we have been hit by a tsunami of food, a food revolution.

    You are well known and loved in the Italian American community in Washington. How did you meet the community at NIAF?
    Well, wherever there is Italy, wherever there is my Basilicata, I am at the front of the line. This is one of the great associations of Italian Americans and I am proud to be a member. I support a lot of NIAF‘s events, like the gala. I have done great events in the past, including one to promote the culture, cuisine, and wine of Calabria. I think that John Viola has started a new direction that I am a big fan of. It will inspire more young people with a different approach, and get them closer to the National Italian American Foundation. I think he is doing a great job.

    When you retire will you go back to Italy and open a restaurant?
    Oh well, I’ll go back for sure, but I don’t know about opening a restaurant!

    Let us end our conversation with a very delicate question for a chef—What is your favorite Italian dish?
    That’s a good question because I have a problem: I like all kinds of food, and it shows! But how can I not like pasta? In particular I like pasta e fagioli, homemade, because it’s one of my oldest food memories. Next to our fireplace was a terracotta pot full of beans that would cook all day, and when I came home hungry from school, I would take bread and dip it inside.

    Al Tiramisù: The Book
    A Cross-Cultural Culinary Journey from Basilicata to Washington, D.C.

    Chef Luigi published the Al tiramisu restaurant Cookbook in December 2013. Co-written with award-winning author Amy riolo, this unique collection of more than 100 mouthwatering recipes reveals the history of Al tiramisu, Washington, DC’s “most authentic” Italian restaurant, as well as the life story of Chef/owner Luigi Diotaiuti. the book welcomes readers to Al tiramisu - sharing memories and favorite dishes of both celebrity diners and cherished clients. Chef Luigi then leads a culinary tour back to his homeland of basilicata, Italy (where he was recently awarded the Ambassador of basilicata’s Cuisine in the world by the federation of Italian Cooks) and shares secrets from some of the finest dining establishments around the globe where he began his career. the final chapter outlines the chef’s life in America and includes recipes that he served at the James Beard Foundation and in cross-cultural culinary venues on both sides of the Atlantic. each beloved recipe represents Al tiramisu’s “elevated” Italian cooking style and features an Italian cooking tip and a wine pairing.

    Al Tiramisu Restaurant

    2014 P St NW, Washington, DC 20036

    Click here to watch the interview Ottorino Cappelli did with Chef Luigi Diotiaiuti.

    This interview is part of the TV series ‘Italian Leadership in America,’ a co-production of i-Italy and the National Italian American Foundation.

  • Tourism

    Don't You Just Love Italy in the Fall?

    If you haven’t booked your Italian dream vacations yet, don’t be too sad. As it turns out, you might have done the wise choice. And you’re still in time for the best. 

    Italy is a tourist paradise year-round, but summer might be hot, crowded and expensive.

    With more affordable airline and hotel rates, fall might be the best time to visit — from September to October. And the weather is still ideal.

    Still time for the beach You will be able to admire the gold and brown colors of the countryside in Tuscany and Umbria. And in September you can still go to the beach in the southern regions: from Naples to Capri and Sorrento, from Sicily to Sardinia, from Puglia to Calabria.

    Avoid heat and crowds Famous attractions and museums in Florence and Rome will not be as crowded as in the hot summer months. Furthermore, Venice’s Piazza San Marco must be seen in a  fall, foggy morning to fully appreciate its mystery (sun will usually emerge around noon).

    The same for Piedmont’s Langhe region, the capital of the best Italian wines. A culinary paradise  And speaking about wines… in the off-peak season you can still enjoy outdoor dining (but bing a jacket with you at night) and appreciate seasonal fruits with wonderful pecorino cheese, chestnuts, truffles, mushrooms, and cinghiale salami!  

    Best prices    To encourage fall visitors, many hotels and resorts in Italy will welcome you with special offers and discounted rates. Italy’s national airline Alitalia has very interesting packages for fall seasonal travelers: you can fly to Rome round-trip from New York for just $850 and from Los Angeles for as little as $1,135. Must try!

  • Life & People

    Interview with Anthony Julian Tamburri, Distinguished Professor

    Most of you know Anthony Julian Tamburri. For the general public he is a notable scholar, a prolific writer, and the Dean of John D. Calandra Italian American Institute, the largest university-wide institute outside of Italy dedicated to the study of the Italian diasporic experience.

    For us, he is first of all a friend and the president of the Italian American Digital Project — thefirst person to believe in i-Italy seven years ago and the one who made its start possible.
    Now, effective this past September 1, he is yet something else: a CUNY Distinguished Professor. Reserved to a handful of people, the status of Distinguished Professor is conferred by the City University of New York Board of Trustees in recognition of special scholarship merits and commitment to teaching. Tamburri is Queens College’s 15th distinguished professor, and the first in his department, European Languages and Literatures, to achieve this title.
    We met him in his 17th-floor office at the Calandra Institute, in the very heart of Manhattan a few steps from the NY Public Library and Bryant Park.
    What is a Distinguished Professor and why is this title so important?

    The title of Distinguished Professor is the highest academic recognition that one could achieve in the university system in the United States. Within CUNY, there is the particularity, as I have understood it, that the approval of such depends mostly on the review process that is peer reviewed. One is judged at three different levels: the department, the College, and CUNY-wide, all by professors. It is, further, an anonymous process. For me, it is precisely the fact that this is a faculty-based recognition that makes it all the more prestigious; namely, my colleagues at various levels at Queens College and CUNY thought me meritorious of such a distinction.
    Your Distinguished Professor title is important also for a few specific reasons: there are very few Distinguished Professors in Italian Studies and even fewer in Italian-American Studies (William Connell, Peter Carravetta, Teresa Fiore, Fred Gardaphe, Mario Mignone, Stanislao Pugliese, to name a few). What is the significance of this Distinguished Professorship for the field?

    For the fields of both Italian and Italian-American Studies, such a distinction, first and foremost, brings attention to the fields. While my official title is “Distinguished Professor of European Languages and Literatures,” my professional development and subsequent career have been evenly divided between Italian and, as I write it, Italian/American Studies, which is widely known. Thus, in addition to bringing attention to the fields, it also, and this is germane specifically to Italian-American Studies, offers approbation — both acceptance and endorsement by such a system that is CUNY, the largest urban university in the United States that boasts a graduate studies system that is the CUNY Graduate Center that is second to none.
    But Italian-American Studies is not part of CUNY’s Graduate Center. Why is that?

    You are correct; it is not an official component of CUNY’s Graduate Center. What I can emphatically state is that Queens College can now boast being the first college and/or university in the United States to have formalized Italian-American Studies at the graduate level. Two years ago the Queens College Academic Senate approved four graduate courses in Italian-American Studies; they are open to all and, most significant, constitute an option for at least two M.A. programs at Queens College: the MALS (Master of Arts in Liberal Studies) and the M.A. in Italian. The course titles are: ITAST 701-Problematics in Italian/American Culture; ITAST 702-Italian Americans and Ethnic Relations: Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of Inter-culturalism; ITAST 703-Italian American Literature; ITAST 704-Italian/American Cinema: Production and Representation. 
    But didn’t you teach Italian-American Studies at the graduate level elsewhere?

    Indeed I have. While I was at Purdue University I taught two different seminars under the auspices of Comparative Literature, which were crossed listed among four departments: American Studies, Comparative Literature, English, Italian. This always tickled me because it demonstrated how this mid-Western university was so open to making sure a course made when the students enrolled wanted and/or needed it for their respective degree programs. Dare I say, one of my Purdue students is now a full professor within the CUNY system.
    I also taught seminars on Italian/American literature and cinema while I was at Florida Atlantic University. There, as both chair of Languages and Linguistics and, subsequently, Associate Dean for Graduate Studies, Research, and Interdisciplinary Studies, and director of the Ph.D. Program in Comparative Studies, I had six students taking courses in Italian Americana, three of whom wrote dissertations related to the field, two of which have been published as books.

    Why do I mention all this? It is incumbent upon us professors of Italian and Italian-American Studies to make sure that our subject matters are taught in as many colleges and universities as possible. This is not as urgent with regard to Italian Studies, though some universities are looking to Italian Studies to save money in spite of the successes the programs. With regard to Italian-American Studies, we remain in an “in-between” space; we are neither Italian enough for the Italians or ethnic enough for the Americans. Hence, we fall between the cracks on both sides of the ocean. My past experiences at places not as cosmopolitan as the greater New York metropolitan area convinces me that pressure both from within — professors — and from without — the Italian-American community and elected officials — will succeed in getting programs established, even, dare I say, at the graduate level. This is an intriguing fact: in no state-supported university in New York — five possible candidates — is there a freestanding Ph.D. program in Italian Studies; there is only the Ph.D. Specialization in Italian within the Department of Comparative Literature at the CUNY Graduate Center, and, fortunately, the current director is most friendly to Italian Studies.
    One of the merits that earned you the title is surely your tireless efforts to renovate and modernize the Calandra Institute. Once not held in much esteem in intellectual circles, under your leadership the Institute now publishes two book series and a peer-review social-science and cultural studies journal (Italian American Review), organizes an annual international conference and a host of events during the year, which include book and film presentations, seminars, lectures, readings. Please tell us how and why the Calandra Institute was created, and what it has become today?

    The Calandra Institute is the largest institute of its kind outside of Italy that was founded as the Italian American Institute to Foster Higher Education in order to promote understanding and research of the Italian-American culture and experience, as was originally stated in 1979. At the outset, the Institute had three major components: counseling, outreach, and research. And while it went through a restructuring in 1995 — which had followed a lawsuit that saved the Institute as a Manhattan entity — it continued to carry out a mission similar to the founding goals. The Institute went through a period of stasis before I arrived, so in an uncanny way the path was paved to expand existing programs and develop new ones, especially those involving critical and analytical, peer-review quality research.
    Your activity is not limited strictly to academia. Indeed you are the executive producer and host of Italics, a monthly TV program aired on CUNY TV, dedicated to the Italian-American experience. And, of course, you are part of the editorial board of i-Italy, that which produces a website, a magazine, and a weekly TV show (on NYCTV Channel 25). You could be defined a “public intellectual.” Why is it so important for you to get out of the academic ivory tower and communicate to larger audiences?

    Your use of the term pubic intellectual in my regard flatters me. Dare I say, it was the original track of the Ph.D. Program in Comparative Studies that I directed at Florida Atlantic University. But public intellectualism — a clear articulation of facts and issues that may be masked or hampered by mainstream and therefore confuses instead of enlightens — is essential if we are to engage in any sort of ethnic discourse, by the very fact that discussions of ethnicity (Italian-American, for sure) may in fact involve narratives that often rely as much on imagination and embellishment as well as on historical accuracy, a common trait as stories are passed down from generation to generation. In our ivory tower, academic research we surely uncover the difference between historical fact and embellished narratives. This is surely  our task as cultural critics and historians, as professors that is. But when we wear the hat of the public intellectual as well, we need to be sure that what we say outside the hallowed halls of the academy is of the same substance of our research but that it is expressed, instead, free of the discipline-specific language, and hence communicated, in turn, through a vocabulary that is both commonplace and wide-spread.

    This should be one of the basic goals of scholars of Italian-American Studies as well as of the institute and centers in which they operate. This goal of clearly articulating the difficult and complex is also what we hold as one of our goals of our public programming of various sorts: the publications, the lectures, symposia, and conferences you mentioned above, as well as the various technological methods of communication at our disposal today, from television to the Internet. In fact, we recently heard from one of our colleague friends in California that a certain individual who attends their events stated that “she has been using the Calandra website to learn about Italian American history/culture—she said basically ‘I’ve gotten an entire university education in Italian American Studies from Calandra, from their website — it has everything — I’ve watched every video, ordered books from it, etc.’ She was quite effusive and appreciated the diversity of what she had learned.”

    This type of reaction is what validates not only what we do at the Calandra Institute, but it also underscores the equally indispensable value of the entire i-Italy project. The more we can inform our communities (both the Italian-American as well as the Italian community in the United States), the better off we shall be as a community, and the better our standing will be within the greater community of the United States. But all of this takes time, effort, and finances, and we need to continue to beat the drum of cultural philanthropy with the hopes that those who can will eventually understand that culture is just as important as any of the more “natural” and/or “hard” sciences.

    What are your plans for the immediate future?

    As a scholar, I am working on two major projects: one is a book-length study dedicated to the Italian writer in the United States: that person who writes in Italian but lives here; the other is dedicated to a new book on Italian-American cinema, those films that many chat about but no one really studies. The third project in the works is a research guide for non-Italian speakers on Aldo Palazzeschi.

    As for the Calandra Institute, we have much work ahead of us. While it is true that we have done much in these past eight years, we shall continue to hone, develop, and modify as need fit our many programs. Not mentioned above is, for example, our Oral History Project, which to date, consists of 22-plus interviews and a 30-minute video of state-level Italian-American elected officials; we hope to have a book out by year’s end. We have also developed two new projects revolving around demographic studies of Italian Americans in the workplace. And we have resurrected a Counseling Center at the Institute, so students of the various Colleges within CUNY can have access to counseling services specifically sensitive to an Italian-American mind-set.

    Also on our plate is a further development of the “Italian American Studies Network,” born out of the four-day workshop that the Calandra Institute organized and led at the Rockefeller Foundation Center in Bellagio, Italy; it was a meeting between nine scholars of American Studies from Italy and nine scholars of Italian-American Studies from the United States.

    On an international level, through our CUNY/Italy Exchange, we have also developed courses on Italian- American Studies at both the University for Foreigners in Perugia and the University of Calabria. In the second case, a specific course was formalized, entitled CLIA (“Cultura e Letteratura Italiana Americana”). It is the first official full course on Italian/American literature and culture in Italy. The course was established for the graduate degree of “Laurea magistrale” (a two-year level degree, similar to the U.S. Master of Arts) in Modern Languages and Literatures. 

    Finally, we shall continue to work with other institutes and centers, such as, for example, New York University’s Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò, as well as engage people in the community who are interested in developing scholarships for graduate students who wish to continue their careers in Italian and/or Italian-American Studies.

  • Life & People

    Frank G. Fusaro and Angelo Vivolo. Meeting the Leadership of the Columbus Citizens Foundation

    Established in 1944 in New York City, the Columbus Citizens Foundation is one of the best known Italian-American organizations in the country, much respected both in the US and Italy. It includes nearly 600 prominent men and women of Italian heritage representing the fields of law, medicine, government, business, education, and the arts. The Foundation describes its mission as “perpetuating pride in our Italian-American heritage, contributing to charitable causes, and encouraging and supporting the educational goals of young people through our grant and scholarship programs.” And indeed, throughout the years, it has disbursed more than $12 million in scholarships, grants, and gifts to charitable organizations and worthy causes, irrespective of race, religion, or nationality. The general public, however, knows the Foundation primarily as the main organizer and sponsor of the Annual Columbus Day Parade, one of New York’s landmark events. Taking place on Columbus Day, the second Monday of October (a Federal Holiday since 1934 in the U.S.), the parade is viewed by millions both on Fifth Avenue and on television throughout the U.S. and abroad. 

    The Parade, the Celebration of the Mass at the Cathedral of St. Patrick, and the Weekend Gala at the Waldorf Astoria are the main official events of Columbus Day. Furthermore, around this nucleus a number of independent events have developed over the years and are organized by the Italian and Italian-American community so that October has become, for all intents and purposes, the “Italian Month” in New York.

    This issue of i-ItayNY proves this beyond a doubt, as you can see from our special insert dedicated to this year’s Italian Heritage and Culture Month. Sponsored by the Italian Heritage and Culture Committee of NY, Inc., the events listed in the insert extend from September to December, suggesting that the most Italian of American cities now actually has an Italian Fall (or even Fall-Winter) period.

    Here we introduce our readers to those who lead and manage the Columbus Citizens Foundation, Frank G. Fusaro and Angelo Vivolo. And, as it is customary in our approach, we present first of all two men, descendants of Italian immigrants, as well as the two highest ranking officials of the Foundation. We highlight their personal and family experience, their community activity and professional history, as well as their thoughts about their heritage and cultural roots and what they have done or plan to do to preserve them. And, with that said, we wish you, Buona lettura!
    Q: Let’s start with your ancestry. Where in Italy are your family origins?
    ANGELO VIVOLO: I am first generation Italian. My father was born outside of Naples in a town called Brusciano. When he and his family arrived in New York City they first stayed with some Italian friends in East Harlem, then they moved to Brooklyn, and eventually settled in Bensonhurst, where almost everybody was Italian. My mother, on the other hand, was born here from a family of Sicilian immigrants from Messina. They lived in Brooklyn too, and that is where she met my dad. He lived in the next house down from her. It’s also where I was born.
    FRANK FUSARO: I am second generation. My grandparents were from Naples and Forio, a village on the island of Ischia, in the Gulf of Naples. Unfortunately, none of my grandparents were alive by the time I reached the age of reason, so I couldn’t hear first-hand stories of their life as immigrants. But I remember living in an apartment in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn, now known as Carroll Gardens, and having four aunts and uncles in our building. It was like a great, extended Italian family, and I have clear memories of Italian food, festivities, and the mass…
    Q: So you were both raised in a heavily Italian environment. What was growing up Italian in Brooklyn like? When did you realize how diverse America is?
    FUSARO: My father died when I was one year old. But because we had so many family members close by, I don’t remember wanting for anything. I always felt good about being Italian because everyone in my world was Italian. Then when I was eight my mother remarried and we moved into a more diverse neighborhood. It was there that I experienced ethnic diversity for the first time.
    VIVOLO: Everything in my life was Italian, since I lived above my grandfather’s Italian restaurant and everyone who worked there and patronized the restaurant were Italian. Food and festivities were always at the center of our family’s life because of the business we have been in till this day. Even Italian music was an important part of family life: my uncle would play the accordion and everyone thought they could sing. It was always fun. And mass every Sunday, of course, was mandatory. But we always knew that we lived in a multiethnic society … This may have been unique to us, since we were in the service industry and therefore exposed to other ethnicities over the years.Besides, when I went to school… that was not an all-Italian environment.
    Q: It wasn’t?
    VIVOLO: No. Most of my friends were Italians, of course, but I attended Lafayette High School, which at that time had a predo-minantly Jewish and Italian student body.  I graduated from Long Island University, and that was a very multiethnic school too. 
    Q: Have you ever experienced “ethnic frictions” or anti-Italian discrimination?
    VIVOLO: Not that I can remember. No, I never had that experience. Incidentally, in my senior year at college I was the President of that multiethnic student body.
    FUSARO: I did observe ethnic frictions between the Italians, Irish and Jews, but nothing very serious. I know many other ethnicities harbored anti-Italian feelings, but I never let that stop me from reaching my goals.
    Q: Do you speak Italian? How important is it for your goal to spread the knowledge of the mother tongue among Italian Americans?
    VIVOLO: My grandparents and my dad spoke Neapolitan and my mother’s parents spoke a very strong Sicilian dialect. I studied Italian in junior high, high school and college, and I can speak conversational Italian. Unfortunately, most schools do not offer Italian as a language option these days, and students are limited because of that. Other languages are viewed as more useful in general and of greater help to business students. As parents, we need to instill in our children that the Italian language is the centerpiece of our culture and heritage. With the recent addition of the AP Italian program, there is a better chance of that changing.
    FUSARO: Both my parents spoke fluent Italian, but with great sadness, I have to admit that like so many second generation Italian Americans I don’t speak the language. It is an all too common phenomenon. Our parents and grandparents were so focused on our being American that they let the language slip. It’s a great regret of mine. You feel somehow separated from your roots if you can’t speak the language.
    I think preserving the language is one of a number of things that should be done to preserve our heritage. However, that’s not an easy task. I believe that if all Italian-Americans who had never visited Italy (and you’d be amazed at how many there are!) were to take the time to understand and appreciate their heritage, it would be a giant step forward.  
    Q: Speaking of Italy, when was the first time you went there? Have you ever visited your ancestral town? What was your first impression?
    FUSARO: I have probably made seven or eight trips to Italy, most recently two years ago when I had the honor of representing the Foundation at the dedication of a $200,000 vehicle that the Foundation donated to the relief effort in L’Aquila after the earthquake.The first trip opened my eyes to the amazing accomplishments of the Italian people. For me, it was a life-changer, and I’ve given over a hundred presentations to students, fellow Foundation members and others about the pride that we should take in being of Italian heritage. My first trip to Ischia made me wonder what made my grandparents leave that paradise for Brooklyn! The answer was simple: opportunity for their children at great personal sacrifice.
    VIVOLO: My first visit to Italy was 30 years ago, and I have been back many, many times since. But unfortunately I never visited my ancestral town, Brusciano.
    Q: What is the Columbus Foundation for you? How did you join and what are you most proud of?
    FUSARO: I have always tried to assist other Italian-American organizations with things like celebrations, fund raising, etc. Then in 1984 a client sponsored me to enter the Foundation. I first joined to meet other Italian Americans in business, but when I got heavily involved I realized what it truly meant to be an Italian American…
    The Parade above all else is our opportunity to tell the world of the accomplishments of Italians and Italian Americans, and to thank those who came before us for all that they sacrificed in order to give their children the opportunity to succeed. Both Angelo and I are from what I call the blessed generation. Our parents never had the opportunities that were available to us. They educated us, instilled in us great values, and sent us out into the world to find our own way.
    But while I am very proud of the Parade, I am most proud of the generosity of our members, of having so many highly accomplished individuals give so much of themselves to the Foundation. So, there’s no question that our scholarship efforts are the single most important thing I am proud of.
    VIVOLO: When I was 31, I got married and moved to Manhattan where I settled in a non-Italian neighborhood. So after a few years, I joined the CCF because I wanted to expose my children to Italian Americans outside my immediate family. In fact, by participating in all the Foundation events, they learned a lot about our culture and heritage. After my first year at the CCF, I became a board member and served in that capacity under six different presidents, becoming more and more involved in the mission of the Foundation. Today, I am proud to be the President of an organization whose membership is dedicated to preserving and enhancing Italian culture and heritage through their philanthropic efforts. Our scholarship program for Italian-American students who have the ability but lack the financial means to receive an excellent education is second to none, and it demonstrates our commitment to give back to our community. These students are our future leaders.
    Q: Mr Fusaro, you have raised millions of dollars to treat Thalasimia, a children’s fatal blood disorder especially rampant in Southern Italy and other Mediterranean countries. This seems to be linked somehow to your Italian origins, am I correct? 
    FUSARO: That’s correct. I learned of Thalasimia through members of the Foundation who had family members who were stricken with the disorder. I had no personal involvement, but when I saw the suffering of the children and parents, I could not turn away.
    Q: Mr. Vivolo, you ran four successful restaurants through the Vivolo Group. Your family is in the restaurant business and, as you said, through food, “Italianness” has always been an integral part of your life. You must feel like an “ambassador” of Italy in the NYC dining scene. How important is food to Italian lifestyle and culture, and to you? 
    VIVOLO: I have owned and operated my restaurants for the past 38 years and feel that I have given the public an opportunity to experience a part of Italian culture through their dining experience. It piques their curiosity about Italy and all of the great products and traditions that led to the creation of our cuisine. On a personal note, as I said, my family traditions are embedded in food and what it represents. But in general, you may well say that food and dining are integral parts of our culture. First, the family table is essential to our social fabric. That’s where we engage in the interactions that reinforce our commitment to family values. Second, enjoying traditional food reminds us where we come from and that we are still a part of that great tradition, even if we were born and live outside of Italy.
    Q: As you mentioned, you were both born and raised in an all-Italian environment. What are the first words in Italian you remember, if any?
    VIVOLO: Too many! I can’t recall the first words…
    FUSARO: Not fit to print! [smiles].

  • Life & People

    Investigating Mafia(s) on a Global Scale

    Dozens of speakers and a very large audience crowded into the Manhattan headquarters of the Calandra Italian American Institute (Queens College, CUNY) to attend its annual two-day conference—this year dedicated to an especially hot topic. 

    We sat down with two of the organizers, Dr. Joseph Sciorra, Director of Academic Programs at the Institute, and Fred Gardaphe, Distinguished Professor of English and Italian American Studies at Queens College, and talked about the ideas behind this amazing gathering of mafia experts from all around the world. 

    Joseph Sciorra: We wanted to look at organized crime from a global perspective. As we are an Italian American Institute, it is obvious that in part we would be dealing with Italian and Italian American criminality, but we wanted to expand beyond those two realms. Because organized crime is not unique to any one group or period. So we have invited people to come speak about organized crime in Japan, Sweden, India, among Polish-Americans, African-Americans, and to diversify—and thus improve—our understanding of this topic.

    Are you satisfied with the results?

    JS: Absolutely. I am really very pleased with the presentations we had as well as with the reaction of the audience. So many people came here and said how important this conference has been and how meaningful it has been to have this conversation here.

    Fred Gardaphe: I think the way we envisioned this conference—MAFIAs in the plural—is very important. First because, although we have talked about the Italian and Sicilian Mafia, showing that organized crime is not just something that belongs to Italians provides a better understanding of the Mafia and does a great service to the  Italian-American community. Second because, as Italy’s former Interior Minister Vincenzo Scotti said in his talk at the Conference, “The only way to fight the Mafia is to fight it globally rather than locally.”

    There also were some negative reactions from members of the Italian-American community who objected even to the idea of having this conference.

    JS: When we sent out our call for papers in May of last year there were a number of people including scholars and colleagues of ours who began to circulate complaints about the very idea of having such a conference, given the predominance of organized crime and Mafia in Italian-American imagery in the media. It is a foolish idea that scholars should be censoring themselves! On the contrary, I believe we should be looking at this subject with all the serious rigor and interdisciplinary background that we have. There is a notion that ethnic studies should only promote the positive. I disagree with that idea. How else to unpack those negative stereotypical images if not by treating them seriously? A number of scholars here looked at the emergence of the negative image of Italian Americans coupled with organized crime. They documented it and so we learned from that. And to not have such scholarship presented publicly would be a travesty.

    FG: A long time ago, when I was a member of the American Italian Historical Association [now the Italian American Studies Association] someone came up with the idea of having a conference on the Mafia. And there was a great professor, Peter Sammartino, buonanima, who said, “We are historians, can’t we just forget about the past?” It was the funniest thing I ever heard in my life. But he was dead serious. Academics at that time did not want to talk about the Mafia. Many people were just afraid. Every time the subject of having a conference on Mafia came up the reaction was: “That would be our last conference. The only conference we could have after it would be a conference on death. Because they’d kill us!”

    Do you feel that Italian-American scholars are in a better position than others to investigate this topic?

    JS: Yes, absolutely. Because we focus on Italian-American culture, we are in contact with a number of scholars who deal with Italian-American history and culture. So we’re in a unique position to bring to the fore all this amazing scholarly work being done.

    FG: For me there is also a personal dimension to this. I was born in the streets, I became an academic because I wanted to educate the streets, I wanted to go back to the streets and tell them what I learned. But I also wanted to bring my experiences of the streets into academia, so that [people there] would study reality, not fantasies. At the conference I read parts of a book I am writing now about my life growing up within organized crime in Chicago. When people think of the Mafia, they think about what they see on TV, in films. But for me Mafia has always been something that is part of life. Some people I knew committed crimes and others did not, but everybody participated in one way or another.

    You went to the podium wearing a black suit and a white tie – the stereotypical image of a gangster…

    FG: Yes, I wanted to play the stereotype. But I also wanted to make people think about what it means when the Mafia is part of your life. It took me a long time before I understood that I was inside the Mafia. I didn’t understand why my father was killed. The police said it was some crazy man who came into the store and killed him and ran away…Or why my grandfather was killed, or my godfather… I was just told lies about these people. And as I grew older I realized that the very men I was working for (after my grandfather died my mother put me to work for some Men fearing I was going to get in trouble) were the men who were involved in killing Kennedy… It took me 40 years!

    What about today? What is left of the power of those men today?

    FG: The way it was explained to me when I was young was: “Look, we came to this country and we were not a part of the system. We had to create our system until we figured out how to get into the big system.” The system was not intended to stay a separate kingdom forever. They wanted to enter legitimate businesses, politics, the legal system, and they did. Nobody wants to be a criminal. No gangster wants to look around every day to see if someone is going to shoot him. The men I was working for became successful and sent their kids to college. They became assimilated in such a way that even their children today don’t know anything about it. Those people were fundamentally proud to be Americans because they couldn’t succeed unless America succeeded. They believed in America. And they sent their kind to fight in the army, to die for the country they were able to steal money from.

    JS: And that’s another good reason why we should contribute to the knowledge of this phenomenon. To really fight the Italian-American mafia stereotype in the media we should not bury the facts under positive images. That’s omertà. We as scholars need to study, to know, to bring facts out into the open air.                                                    

  • Art & Culture

    The Amazing Sound of Noire

    A former student of conser- vatories in Rome and Basel, and a vital member of the down- town scene since 2004, guitarist and composer Marco Cappelli isn’t new to mul- timedia produc- tions involving literature. In 2011 he commemorated the 10th anniver- sary of 9/11 in New York with an original performance based on the successful comic book In the Shadow of No Towers by Pulitzer Prize-win- ning cartoonist Art Spiegelman.

    Noted actor John Turturro read the texts while a series of ani- mations based on Spiegelman’s drawings were projected on the wall while Cappelli’s group Syntax Error played in the fore- ground (DVD by Mode Records). Then came his first album with Acoustic Trio, which includes bassist Ken Filiano and percus- sionist Satoshi Takeishi, among the most active improvisers in the New York musical avant- garde.

    The album, Les Nuages en France (Mode Records), was based on the work of French crime novelist Fred Vargas. And now Le Stagioni del Commissario Ricciardi (The Four Seasons of Detective Ricciardi) combines he experiences and techniques Cappelli has developed over the years in a mature proj- ect launched by Tzadik, the label created and managed by American avant-garde icon John Zorn.

    The literary work covered here is by another popular crime writer, Maurizio De Giovanni, whose series about Detective Ricciardi is set in 1930s Naples and has been successfully translated into French, Spanish, German, and English (see our mini-review on the left page).

    Cappelli and De Giovanni met in their hometown, Naples,one of the stops on the Trio’s 2011 European tour. The writer was invited to read from his work while the Trio improvised.
    De Giovanni subse- quently gave Cappelli a copy of his books.

    “I went deep into Maurizio’s stories,” says Cappelli, “and found them to be impressive, for his style as well as their setting...I decided that Detective Ricciardi would be my next inspiration for the Acoustic Trio.”

    The record brilliantly synthe- sizes minimalism, jazz, Italian folk music, contemporary clas- sical music, movie soundtracks, and more, resulting in a dramatic and evocative new music. Besides the merits of the three virtuosi, its success owes much to the sound of Cappelli’s bizzarre “extreme” guitar—an amplified classical guitar modi- fied with the addition of eight sympathetic resonating strings and MIDI devices.

  • Facts & Stories

    Milan. “The Economic Capital of Italy is Not in Hiding Anymore...”

    Milan is a city well worth discovering and yet it is often perceived by tourists as a distant second compared to Venice, Florence and Rome. What do you think a tourist should know about Milan? Where should he or she start?

    For the past, you might be right. But Milan is the economic capital of Italy, one of the capital cities of European culture, and it’s not in hiding anymore. The increasing number of tourists from all over the world who come here are proof of that. We’re working to make the city even more welcoming, especially given the important Expo 2015 event, for which we’re expecting 20 million visitors, a million from China alone. 

    Walking around Milan is great. The center and historic suburbs, the piazzas and courtyards, the canals of Milan – they all offer surprises. But today I’d also recommend getting around the city’s neighborhoods and parks by bike. BikeMi, our bike sharing network that has also been sucessful in combatting city traffic, is available to the Milanese and tourists. I, for one, love pedaling around the city.

    Who are today’s Milanesi? How have they changed? The late Lucio Dalla once sang, Milan “asks you a question in German and answers you in Sicilian.” It’s reminiscent of New York. Has immigration made Milan a “melting pot”? First and foremost, I’m thinking of the earlier wave of immigration from Southern Italy, and then of today’s wave of non-European immigrants.

    Well, nowadays Milan “asks you a question in German and answers you in English, Russian, or Chinese.” Traditionally, Milan has been an open and inclusive city. The city is in the swing of transforming and developing, thanks in part to the many foreign communities that live and work in the capital of the North. In our globalized world, the integration of diverse cultures and the policies aimed at fostering them are indispensable for building the large metropolis of the future.

    Which places do you love most? Where do you go to get away from it all and be alone with your thoughts?

    The one that stands out is the Rotonda della Besana, which fascinated me as a kid and where I used to take my siblings’s kids to play. Today this place that combines beauty and history – the sacred and profane – is a cultural center that has been restored to the city. Before I became mayor, my law office was located nearby. To get away and reflect, how could I not be lured by the magic silence of Besana’s courtyard? And now that I steward the city, I want to transform it further; the Rotonda will become a playground for children too. A gift for them and their families.

    Traffic, safety, pollution, car sharing, bike sharing, policies that advocate for immigrants, homosexuals, and young people – those are a lot of very different types of problems for a mayor who wants to make progressive changes to city government. And a lot of work. One of your notable slogans is “Refined Force.” That sure is very different from Giuliani’s “Zero Tolerance.” How is it going?

    In times of crisis, like the one we’ve seen in recent years, it’s not easy to manage a city; insecurity is burrowed everywhere and uncertainty about the future pinions the plans of citizens, families and institutions. My motto is “participation,” because I am convinced that by working together you can escape the nightmare of a crisis that has struck the middle class and, most especially, young people. That’s another reason that, in the two years of my administration, we have sought to involve the populace in many controversial projects. Take Area C, for example, the campaign against congestion we launched to reduce traffic in the city center and make the air safer to breathe. There was resistance at first, but we forged ahead with conviction. Today the results confirm the route we took was the right one. Easy and sustainable mobility is no longer a utopian dream. As for safety, I don’t believe in “militarized” cities, but in the active collaboration between institutions that should guarantee our safety.

    What places in Milan must you absolutely see, even if you only have a few hours, and why?

    The list is long. But, if you had just a few hours, I’d suggest starting with the Piazza del Duomo, the heart of Milan that faces the Palazzo Reale with its grand art exhibits; the Museo del Novecento with its collection of contemporary art; and the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, Milan’s gateway, which leads to La Scala, the world’s temple of opera. But the very modern Piazza Gae Aulenti, with its skyscrapers, is worth a visit. It’s the symbol of where Milan is headed in the future. Another must is the Castello Sforzesco that opens out onto the green area of Parco Sempione, our version of Central Park. For those who just have to go shopping, you can’t skip a stroll around the Quadrilatero della Moda. It’s a trip into the marvels of “Made in Italy” and the “Italian Way of Life.”

    One question about Expo Milan 2015. Could you briefly explain what it is for American readers? How will it transform Milan?

    Expo Milan 2015 will be the biggest post-crisis global event. Thanks to its theme, “Feeding the Planet: Energy for Life,” we have reached a record 138 participating countries. Food safety, water as a common good, the campaign against waste, sustainable development: we can’t postpone giving concrete answers to these bonafide planetary emergencies. We must build a more sustainable and just world. In the search for a new model for development, Expo Milan signals a shift from industrial development to sustainable development in the era of consciousness. The Universal Exposition will be a window onto extremely innovative ideas and technologies. That’s why coming to Milan in 2015 will be a must for everyone: political institutions, science centers, businesses and tourists. Smart City Milan, which is being developed alongside the Expo smart site, awaits you.

  • Events: Reports

    The ‘Italian Month’ in New York

    Tell us something about the “Italian Heritage and Culture Committee–NY, Inc. How did it come into existence, and why?

    We are a non-profit organization founded in 1976 by Dr. Angelo Gimondo and a group of interested parties to promote a week of recognition about Italian American achievements and activities. If you recall those years in America, it was a period of “enlightenment” in which various racial and ethnic groups began to realize that we were not necessarily a melting pot but rather, as Governor Mario Cuomo would say: “ A mosaic with its many colors.”
    In that year, then NYC Mayor Abraham Beame, proclaimed the first “Italian Culture Week,” which took place in May. The concept of a heritage week, and now month, was to inform students and teachers of the activities of Italians and Italian Americans, and for that reason it took place when students were in school, and Spring appeared to be a good fit. It was later decided that this was not the best of months; and since Columbus Day weekend activities fell in October, the move to October then took place.

    Is there anything like this in other American states?
    Yes, there are states that have declared it at the municipal and state levels of government in that they have Italian Heritage and Culture Month salutes in places such as Illinois, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, to name a few. Each state does what appears to be “their” celebration; while at the national level, we have been able to obtain declarations from various presidents of the United States that October is Italian Heritage and Culture Month. Oftentimes, we have felt that this recognition has taken great time and energy to get to the right folks at such levels, but in recent years we have seen the letters come forth form the White House declaring such.

    Nine years after being established, in 1985, the festivities moved to October, to coincide with various Columbus Day celebrations. Mario Cuomo was then the Governor of the State of New York. Did the ethnicity of the first Italian-American Governor have an impact on your activities? And what about today, under the governorship of Mario’s son Andrew?

    In retrospect, the Governor and his staff enacted a greater role in the celebration that evolved about the holiday weekend of Columbus. For example, while the Order Sons of Italy in America (OSIA) had always had, by virtue of its constitution, celebrations on the Columbus Day weekends, and I recall this as the State President of the NYOSIA, at that time and during his initial years as Governor, Cuomo commenced hosting celebrations either right in the Empire State Building for a “mock” lighting ceremony, that eventually has become a standard each of the Columbus Day weekends. Governor George Pataki was another great proponent of promoting the month of October for Italian Americans, and he created his Italian heritage to his own mother who regularly attended many a function.

    As for our now Governor Andrew Cuomo, I and many have known of him since his father’s term of office, and we know of his own personal pride in being the son of two very important Italian Americans, Mario and Matilda Raffa Cuomo. As Governor Andrew Cuomo has taken office at a time when the seeds have matured for the IHCC-NY, Inc. and its annual celebration of Italian Heritage and Culture months, he has continued the tradition of providing resolutions in honor of the month of October and is a visible witness as to what the “American Dream” can be for the children and grandchildren of immigrants such as his grandparents. And so, at the governor’s level, we have enjoyed the support of the highest personages in the State of New York towards our efforts.
    How do you chose your annual theme? Do you collaborate with Italian government institutions?

    The themes are generally developed over a period of six to nine months prior to the year commencing and, yes, we do check and review what the Italian Government, through the Embassy of Italy, might suggest. But, overall, we look to celebrate themes that are pertinent for that year and/or that period of time: i.e., the 500th Anniversary of the passing of Amerigo Vespucci; the 150th Anniversary of the unification of Italy; the 500th Anniversary of the Birth of Palladio; the 400th Anniversary of Galileo; or the 200th Anniversary of the Birth of Garibaldi, etc.

    What is this year’s theme and what are the most relevant events you will sponsor?

    For this year 2013, the celebration will be about “2013: Year of Italian Culture in the United States,” certainly a very wide theme, but we are having events all over the city, state, and nation, and the Embassy of Italy through its Foreign Ministry has led the way. These themes cover any variety of industry and activity in Italy and here in the United States. Here in NYC, there will be some 250 events: from parades in the boroughs, to the opera salutes for the 200th Anniversary of Giuseppe Verdi, to the early childhood programs and right to the dinner on Columbus Day weekend at the famed Waldorf=Astoria; and then the Mass at the Cathedral of St. Patrick and Parade on that Columbus Day Monday. It is a terrific time of the year when all come out with their respective “Italianità.”
    IHCM’s mission includes: “Encourage positive portrayals of Italian-Americans in the media and among the general public.” This is the opposite approach of “anti-defamation” organizations. Your mission is not to “protest against the negative,” but to “encourage the positive...” Any further thoughts in this regard?

    I am, and have been, a major proponent of presenting always the positive image of Italian Americans and have fought that ongoing battle for years, previously as the National/State President of the Order Sons of Italy in America and as the Chairman of its Commission for Social Justice. And, in my opinion, we must not let up on that ongoing battle that oftentimes we encounter with the press, TV portrayals, etc. Nonetheless, it is the “positive” achievements that many do remember and recall throughout the year and, so by presenting sound programs of culture, heritage, and language, we unite and create a synergy of effort by which we are telling new Yorkers, Americans all and even throughout the world, that Italians and Italian Americans are achievers at the highest level. We have so very much to be proud of. This has been my mantra; and my prayer and hope are that the next generation and those that follow truly study and appreciate the sacrifices that the early immigrants made to this great country of ours. We only need to look around the city, in various states and throughout the nation to see the buildings, architecture, sculptures, and so much more in every field of endeavor to know that we are truly Italian and have inherited a great legacy!

    To that end, while I serve as President/Chair of the Italian Heritage and Culture Committee-NY, Inc., our Board of Directors and I will do everything possible to promote our heritage and culture with energy, enthusiasm, and education. Most of all, I thank the collaborative efforts of such media and publications as i-Italy that evidences a deep interest in what we are doing. This is the message that we must get to the general public, and that is the only way we can continue to portray the positive image that we are about. We are a good people, and the world knows it, and in the month of October we shine a bit brighter as in the mosaic!

  • Life & People

    The Mystery of Underground Naples

    As Erri De Luca says in the interview with Letizia Airos, to really see Naples you need a good friend. And there could hardly be a better friend, and guide, than Msgr. Gennaro Matino. A professor of theology and a prolific essayist, Msgr. Matino is a longtime friend and colleague of Erri De Luca himself. Sharing a deep interest in the language and symbolism of the Scriptures, they have written three books  together. So when we met Msgr. Matino in his church’s office, sitting by his computer and surrounded by so many books, and asked him to be our friend in Naples, our conversation was the natural continuation of the one we began with Erri De Luca.

    A different approach

    “Naples can be visited in so many ways,” begins Msgr. Matino. “Do you know which city has the largest number of domes and bell towers in Europe? Naples does, and it’s second only to Jerusalem in the world. Putting it this way, it would mean visiting Naples by only sight, and by looking up for most of the time. But Naples should not be seen with ‘one’s nose in the air,’ only admiring the domes, the Baroque ceilings, and the blue sky. The usual tourist itineraries in Naples include famous art work and the sea, and most guides already have those covered. It’s all well and good for those who come to Naples to visit the Capodimonte Museum, the Archaeological Museum, the treasure of San Gennaro, and the great churches of Santa Chiara, San Lorenzo, and the Duomo. And passing through the popular streets of Mezzocannone, Spaccanapoli, and San Gregorio Armeno, one will be fascinated by the street life and the nativity scenes on display throughout the year. But there is more to see, and the guides don’t often discuss it.”

    The subterranean city

    And where would our Neapolitan friend take us instead? “Naples underground. Within thecity’s bowels, there is everything from Byzantine mosaics to the ruins of ancient shops, all sorts of treasures preserved in tufo, the stone out of which Naples is made. It’s a soft stone that at the same time is very durable.”

    This is a different sort of trip, with various odors, colors, and sounds that we are not used to above ground, in the realm of Naples that is sun-drenched and rowdy. “Yes, this is subterranean Naples. The Fontanelle Cemetery, for example, is the only one of its kind. It’s the place for a popular cult of the dead that goes far beyond the religious. There are hundreds of skulls and bones preserved, one on top of the other. They are the memory of ancient tragedies such as cholera and the plague that have infested Naples over the centuries.

    These poor bones have been left to the mercy of a people who tell their own stores through them. Families ‘adopt’ the skulls of the unknown, care for them, clean them, and preserve them as if they were their own ancestors. There even those who interpret the future through the skulls….”Then there’s the beauty of the catacombs. Many tourists think that the catacombs are only located in Rome, where they tell the story of Christian persecution of under Nero.

    “This is not the case. In pre-Christian Naples, there already existed an entire underground city that had its own centers. These ‘centers’ were the two large catacombs of San Gennaro and San Gaudioso. They are, above all, cemeteries and places of worship, but also shelters against persecution. San Gennaro died in 305 during the persecutions of the Emperor Diocletian.”

    The scared and the profane

    And here is truly the entire Neapolitan mélange, combining both the sacred and the profane. “Of course. The charm of antiquity, popular faith, and mystery all reside here. And at the same time, in the catacombs you’ll find the cult of the phallus, of fertility, worship of Priapus. These are things that, outside of Naples, I’ve only seen in India…. All this is part of the lure of subterranean Naples. Have I convinced you?”

    Our Neapolitan friend has convinced us. And so we hope to have convinced our readers on their next trip to Naples. 

  • Events: Reports

    Bounded Rationality Updated: The 1st Conference of the Herbert Simon Society at the Italian Cultural Institute

    The International Herbert A. Simon Society is based in Torino (Italy) where it was created in 2008 by an international group of scholars critical of the traditional paradigms of economic thinking that are at the origin of the recent financial crisis and of the many forecasting errors made by national and international financial institutions.

    This scholarly association is named after the winner of the 1978 Nobel Prize for Economics Herbert A. Simon (1916-2001) who was the first to challenge radically the model of rationality used by neoclassical economics. Herbert Simon, an eclectic social scientist who was awarded the Nobel Prize "for his pioneering research into the decision-making process within economic organizations", is famous for his idea that only a limited type of procedural and subjective rationality (or Bounded Rationality) might enable economics to move beyond the abstraction and errors of contemporary doctrines.

    The Simon Society thus seeks to connect scholars and academic research centers all over the world with the aim to modernize economic science and promote non-neoclassical directions such as behavioural and cognitive economics, neo-institutional economics, evolutionary economics, and organization theory. The Society, according to its web site, also offers its contribution in application to public and private economic decision-makers who want to update the instruments for analysis and forecasting.

    The conference "Bounded Rationality Updated" is the society's first international conference and is subtitled "Slow and Fast Thinking, Creativity and Rational Expectations". These are themes dear to the Director of the Italian Cultural Institute Riccardo Viale, himself a scholar and an expert of cognitive economics as well as a founder of the Simon Society. It makes perfect sense thus that the Italian Cultural Istitute will be the main location for the very dense program of this conference which involves a host of prestigious panelists from several countries. The other location will be the Italian Academy at Columbia University.

    The works will be concluded by another Nobel Prize for Economics (2001) Joseph Stiglitz, professor at Columbia University and author of many renowned books among which the best-selling Globalization and Its Discontents, translated into 35 languages.

    * * *

    Welcoming Remarks April 8 - 5:30 pm


    Natalia Quintavalle (Consul General)

    Riccardo Viale (Director Italian Cultural Institute)

    Massimo Egidi (Herbert Simon Society)


    Introduction: Katherine Simon Frank




    Gerd Gigerenzer: Homo Heuristicus: Why biased minds make better inferences, April 8 - 6:00 pm

    Roy Radner: Bounded rationality: In search of a definitionApril 9 - 9:00 am


    Alan Kirman: Is it rational to have rational expectations? April 9 - 12:30 pm


    Ron Sun: On implicit vs. explicit and fast vs. slow processesApril 9 - 2:30 pm


    David Over: New paradigm psychology of reasoning and rationalityApril 9 - 6:30 pm


    Laura Macchi: The interpretative function of thinking in insight problem solvingApril 10 - 9:00 am


    Jonathan Schooler: Keeping the mind open for inspirationApril 10 - 12:30 pm


    Joseph Stiglitz: Rethinking macroeconomics: What went wrong and how to fix itApril 10 - 6:30 pm



    Parallel sessions on:


    Rational expectations, bounded rationality, markets and investments

    Slow and fast thinking Creativity and other stuff.

    To know more, time and locations download full conference program   >>>>