Italy and Africa, entwined

first_imgStudents of literature often construct their understanding of a topic primarily from books and readings. But that’s not the case for students in Giuliana Minghelli’s new course on cultural migrations between Africa and Italy, where they have witnessed a performance by one of the assigned authors and have the opportunity to develop their own creative responses.Minghelli, associate professor of Romance languages and literatures, found her interest in the subject piqued by her study of Italy’s early 20th century modernist writers. Many of them, she discovered, were either born in or had lived in Africa.“People like Futurism founder Filippo Tommaso Marinetti chose Africa as the stage on which to perform the speed, modernity, action, and violence of his Futurist poetics,” Minghelli noted. “That is quite intriguing. Why Africa?”On the one hand, she said, Africa represented a blank canvas onto which Italian writers could project their wildest fantasies. At the same time, the continent functioned as a land of exile and escape, initially from the fascist regime that controlled Italy in the decades leading up to World War II.Later, in the 1960s, writers fled from the homogenization of capitalist consumer culture. For instance, author and film director Pier Paolo Pasolini traveled to Africa in search of an alternative, uncontaminated world.Indeed, despite a desire on the part of many Italian authors to paint Africa as a primitive and exotic world, the continent is very close to Italy, perhaps uncomfortably so for many at the time. After the unification of Italy in 1861, Italians strove to present themselves as a thoroughly European culture, repressing what Minghelli calls “the Africa within Italy.”Yet Italy also needed Africa, for economic reasons and because it was felt practicing colonialism would establish a stronger sense of national identity. The Italians were late to the “scramble for Africa,” waiting until 1936 — after the conquest of Eritrea, Somalia, and Ethiopia — to proclaim an official Italian Empire. The desire for conquest was buoyed by archaeological excavations in Africa that unearthed Roman ruins, which Italians used to link their colonizing activities to the glory of the Roman Empire.“If you’re interested in the question of Italian nation-building and identity formation, Africa is really central,” Minghelli said.She sees her new course, Italian 136: “Cultural Migrations Between Africa and Italy,” as an attempt to reconstruct a history that Italy itself has largely ignored. Despite the violence of the Italian intervention led by Mussolini — the 1935-36 war in Ethiopia was one of the bloodiest colonial wars ever — the Italians perpetuated an image of “Italiani brava gente” (“Italians are nice people”) that continues today.According to this mythical historical narrative, the Italians were motivated not by dreams of military takeover but by an innocent, even laudable desire to build roads, hospitals, and schools in Africa. For years, the experience of colonialism was excluded from academic discourse. Perhaps for that reason, Minghelli says, some Italians still look back on the period with nostalgia, seeing it as “a beautiful adventure.”“The real story of Italian colonialism is not a story that is being told in Italy,” Minghelli says. “It is a missed debate.”Starting in the 1990s, however, Africans from colonized territories began writing about their experience immigrating to Italy, and Italian intellectuals such as Giorgio Agamben and Roberto Esposito began theorizing about the colonial subject.One author who addresses the legacy of colonialism and the experience of immigration is Gabriella Ghermandi, who visited Harvard to perform and lend a personal dimension to the issues discussed in Minghelli’s course. Ghermandi, born in Ethiopia to an Italian father and an Ethiopian mother, wrote her debut novel, titled “Regina di fiori e di perle” (“Queen of Flowers and Pearls”), in 2007.“I didn’t want my first novel to be autobiographical,” Ghermandi said. “Even if I had wanted to, it would have been impossible because what happened in those years is still a bleeding wound.”Her performance, however, told the story of her own family, drawing on the African tradition of oral storytelling and weaving in Ethiopian songs in an attempt to untie “the knot of memory” and to recuperate and celebrate the past.Born 25 years after the end of Italian colonialism, Ghermandi still confronted terrible racism growing up in Ethiopia, leading her mother to try to make her “more white.” When she arrived in Italy at age 14, however, she felt lost and out of place. It was only when she accepted that she was not Italian that she felt free to take pride in her Ethiopian heritage.Meanwhile, the Italian language, which she calls her “father tongue,” became a “spatial home” for Ghermandi, in which she was able to come to terms with her physical and emotional journey.At the end of her performance, Ghermandi encouraged audience members to share their own stories, which students will do via a creative project based on the stories they read. “Cultural Migrations Between Africa and Italy” will end with their staging a theatrical performance.“This is no academic exercise,” Minghelli said, of coming to terms with the realities of Italian colonialism. “It’s something that needs to be done, and by doing this we will be able to recognize and traverse our post-colonial present.”last_img read more

NWS Warns of -20 Wind Chill on Long Island This Weekend

first_imgThe blustery conditions can be blamed on an “arctic outbreak” making its way to the region this weekend.NWS meteorologists said in a weather briefing that the coldest time period will be from late Saturday through Sunday morning.Saturday’s forecast calls for a high near 22 during the day but the temperature will steadily drop into the lower teens as the day progresses. Eventually the mercury will plummet to around -5 degrees at night. What’s more, the wind chill could make it feel like -20, forecasters said.The arctic blast will hang over the Island on Sunday—meaning Valentine’s Day revelers will have to bundle up to enjoy the festivities. Temperatures on Sunday are expected to hit the teens but won’t go much higher than that, the weather service said.The agency is advising residents to pack on layers and make use of gloves and hats to prevent the loss of body heat.The deep freeze could cause serious health issues like hypothermia, the weather service warned. Symptoms include confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and severe shivering, the weather service said.A reprieve from bone-chilling temperatures could come as early as next week. Monday’s forecast calls for sunny skies with a high near 35. Things only get better from there with back-to-back days of temperatures in the low 40s, forecasters said. Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Just the thought of what’s coming this weekend has us shivering in our pants.The National Weather Service in Upton said Long Islanders should expect “dangerously cold” conditions beginning overnight Saturday with subzero temperatures and wind chill values close to -20 across the Island.last_img read more

HOW: Big companies are investing in new trends and creating completely new and different catering

first_imgU četvrtak, 28.rujna 2017.godine otvoren je prva europski festival hotelskih operacija HOW u Falkensteiner hotelu Iaderi u Zadru.Velike tvrtke ulažu u nove trendove i stvaraju posve novo i drugačije ugostiteljstvo, zaključak je prvog dana HOW Festivala, koji okuplja srednji menadžment- direktore hotela, voditelje hotelskih odjela i direktore operacija, a izuzetno veliki broj sudionika je pokazao interes te je HOW već u prvoj godini organiziranja okupio preko 500 osoba!Centralna panel diskusija nakon otvorenja HOW Festivala 2017 okupila je tri vrhunska stručnjaka koji su svoju karijeru u potpunosti posvetili hotelskoj industriji. Panel, vođen moderatoricom i organizatoricom HOW Festivala, Marinom Franolić, zaintrigirao je publiku, u kojoj su nove načine međunarodnog hotelskog poslovanja željeli iz prve ruke saznati svi sudionici- ugostitelji, hotelijeri, mali, srednji i veliki poduzetnici čiji je biznis usko vezan uz ovu brzorastuću granu gospodarstva.Edwin Broers, regionalni potpredsjednik CEE, Wyndham Hotel Group, istaknuo je važnost motivacije nove generacije kao gostiju, ali i hotelijera. Broersova vizija novog poslovanja u hotelijerstvu nalazi se u suradnji velikih hotelskih lanaca s online turističkim agencijama i njihovoj sinergiji. Biznis modeli se, kako navodi, rapidno i intenzivno mijenjaju i hotelska industrija se mora prilagoditi gostima i ulagati u marketing za privlačenje zaposlenika.Jacques Morand, potpredsjednik SEE Hyatt Hotels & Resort na najviše mjesto poslovanja stavlja iskustvo gosta. Visoka kvaliteta usluge, što uključuje i prepoznavanje potreba svakog gosta i odgovaranje na te potrebe u pravom trenutku, stvara odanost. Hotelski posao, bez obzira na tehnologiju kojom unaprjeđuju samu uslugu, treba se raditi s puno emocije i osjećaja. Naš redoviti gost, naš je član obitelji.Frank Reul, Voditelj razvoja Orbis/Arccorhotels EE, kao recept uspjeha u praćenu novih gostiju i novih trendova kaže: “Naša je zadaća da predvidimo što naš gost želi i prije nego on sam to zaželi.” U ostvarenju takve hotelijerske mehanike, pomažu podaci koje korisnici sami svojevoljno daju, te time pomažu hotelijerima da daju bolju uslugu. Hoteli, kažu Reul, su bili uspavani u vrijeme kad je Booking počeo a sad je vrijeme da svom gostu daju izbor da svoj smještaj rezerviraju kad god žele, gdje god žele.Imaš li strasti za posao koji radiš, složili su se sugovornici, onda si pobjednik. Bez strasti, trebaš razmišljati o drugom poslu. Rekli bi da to vrijedi za sve generacije i trend je koji u uspješnom poslovanju nikad ne prestaje.last_img read more

Sophia man, technicians slapped with rape charges

first_imgA Sophia, Greater Georgetown man was on Wednesday remanded to prison after he appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan on a rape charge.It is alleged that 34-year-old Aduke Josiah of Plum Street, Sophia, raped a 15-year-old girl on August 18, 2018. The prosecution is contended that the teen was in his care at the time of the incident. Following the incident, the teen informed her mother what had occurred and a report was made to the Police. In court on Wednesday, the prosecution did not say why the charges were instituted eight months later. However, Josiah was remanded to prison and the case will continue on April 12.Meanwhile, a technician, who is accused of raping a woman who rejected his advances, was released on $100,000 bail when he too appeared before the Chief Magistrate.It is alleged that on August 24, 2018, he made sexual advances towards the Virtual Complainant, but she rejected him. This alleged made the 57-year-old angry and he reportedly forced himself onto her. The alleged rape reportedly occurred at Alberttown, Georgetown.The case will continue on April 10.last_img read more