The Working Christs of Ralph Fasanella

by ILARIA SERRA “Poor Christ,” Italian immigrant. The Italian saying refers to people who are unlucky and disgraced: Poor Christ… but in Italian American literature and art it has become a widespread metaphor, at least thanks to the foundational novel Christ in Concrete by Pietro di Donato, released in the United States in 1939 and …

Before and after tin foil

di JOANNA CLAPPS HERMAN It all started with tinfoil Or maybe tissues. Paper napkins? We lived one way—a time of constraint– before tin foil and a completely different way after tin foil– one which rapidly raced toward the future. Definitely using tissues changed the way we lived. When paper towels came along times changed even …

‘La vita promessa’, an italian tv series

by MICHELA VALMORI On September 16th, 2018, the Italian TV series “La Vita PROMESSA” was premiered in Italy. Under the direction of Ricky Tognazzi and Simona Izzo, the screenplay of Laura Toscano and Franco Marotta and the production of Picomedia, it was proposed in prime time to the Italian public, the story and the evolution …

From the other direction: a conversation with Charles Cantalupo

by ROSA AMATULLI Charles Cantalupo’s work has received support from the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations and the World Bank. He is the author of four books of translations of Eritrean poetry; four books of literary criticism ranging from Thomas Hobbes to Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o; and a memoir, Joining Africa – from Anthills to Asmara. His two most …

George Mazzei and the “conquest” of italian language

di CALLI ABISOGNIO His name is George Mazzei, with 84 years of life behind him to cherish and look back on. But, for him, there is still so much to see — as I spoke with George, I could hear his passion for life through the way he spoke.  Born and raised in Brooklyn, New …

Carmela & Giovanni: a Brooklyn love story

by MICHELA VALMORI She sat on the stoop of her five-story Brooklyn apartment, knitting a blanket for her baby sister as she waited for him to come home from the shop. Could she even call this place an apartment? It was cramped and unbearably hot under the July sun, each room warmer than the next …

“You wanted to find Fiorito? Well, here it is”- an interview with Mike Fiorito

di VALENTINA DI CESARE Mike Fiorito is a writer, an Associate Editor for Mad Swirl Magazine and a regular contributor to the Red Hook Star Revue. His books are Call Me Guido (Ovunque Siamo Press), Freud’s Haberdashery Habits and Hallucinating Huxley (Alien Buddha Press).  What is your connection to Italy and to your origins?   My father’s family comes from Sala Consilina, which …

Rope and Soap: Realities in a Land Where “The Bread is Soft But Life Is Hard”

by DOMENICA SANTOMAGGIO DIRAVIAM Fabio Girelli-Carasi’s, Rope and Soap: Lynchings of Italians in the United States (the English translation of Patrizia Salvetti’s work intitled Corda e sapone: storie di linciaggi di Italiani negli Stati Uniti) and the documentary, Linciati: Lynchings of Italians in America in jointly provide an enlightened understanding of the episodes of lynching …