Italian Americans are invisible people. Not because people refuse to see them, but because, for the most part, they refuse to be seen. Italian Americans became invisible the moment they could pass themselves off as being white. And since then they have gone to great extremes to avoid being identified as anything but white, they have even hidden the history of being people of color.
Whether they like it or not, Italian Americans cannot escape the fact that they weren’t always white. They were lynched, burned out of homes, chased, captured and killed by vigilantes and the Ku Klux Klan. At the direction of politicians and businessmen, they were herded into ghettos and then redlined and relocated into acceptable neighborhoods. They were discriminated against by political, social, economic, and religious institutions. And in spite of sharing the experiences of other minorities, many of them have adopted the attitudes and stances of the dominant culture of racism, a culture that maintains control by dividing by difference and uniting by illusion of similarity. By becoming white, they have paid a price, and that price is the extinction of their culture.
Fred Gardaphé “Invisible People: Shadows and Light in Italian American Culture”
There are few things I hate more than when members of formerly oppressed groups turn their back on their fellow minorities and join the racist hegemony.
There was a time not too long ago when being Italian was not a good thing in the eyes of many “real” Americans. We were seen as sub-human criminals who could never be truly loyal Americans, in part because of our Catholicism, but also because of our non-Nordic blood. Prominent scientists wrote at length about the supremacy of Northern European blood and invented convoluted theories about how the Roman Empire was actually run by a bunch of lily-white, blond-haired, blue-eyed Nordics, and not us swarthy Mediterraneans, because God forbid they admit that someone with a tan invented the arch.
That’s why I get so pissed off at prominent Italian-American politicians like Antonin Scalia, Rick Santorum, Joe Arpaio, Tom Tancredo, John Barrasso, et al. Their regressive attitudes towards racial equality and the treatment of immigrants reveal an ignorance of their own history… a history that they could really stand to learn from.
Self confidence is the most attractive quality a person can have, how can anyone see how AWESOME you are if you can’t see it yourself??
Siamo tutti vulnerabili per il timore, l’ansia di non sapere ciò che accadrà. E alla fine è inutile, perché tutte le preoccupazioni e tutto il pianificare cose che potrebbero o non potrebbero accadere peggiorano solo la situazione. E allora porta a spasso il cane, o fa un riposino, insomma fa qualunque cosa ma smettila di preoccuparti. Perché l’unica cura contro la paranoia è essere, qui, così come sei.
I am a Dancer/Dance Teacher/Instructor/Choreographer. I (obviously) love dancing… Its not work….its too much fun….its more a passion that I get paid for… Really what could be better????
I love music too!
…& singing.. although not quite sure my singing is quite up to scratch…. probably more suitable for singing into my hairbrush, while doing the housework, in the shower, or when I have been out and have had too much to drink to care…. ;)
Florence / Firenze, Italia… my second home….
“L’arte, la cultura, i Fiorentini…il tesoro del paese che si chiama Italia…che bella citta’!!!”
My father & his family are from there! I feel more Italian than English really…especially when I am there visiting my family!