"What do we think of Italo-Americans? They look doubly ignorant if they can't even speak the language, or if they slap Italian words in their phrases at random, or replace perfectly fine English words with Italian words just because. Why can't they just use the word 'grandma' instead of hijacking 'Nonna' all the time? Italo-Americans use the Italian flag as if it's theirs. When they come to Italy they feel lost like a stranger. That's because they are. If someone of Chinese decent is born in Germany or England they are German or English. Period."
10/20/2015 03:33:29 am
What makes YOU
10/20/2015 08:21:20 am
Teresa, In your comment you capitalized the word "YOU" as if you are directing your contempt toward me personally and are calling me "ignorant". I must remind you, that when I post these short "What Italians Think About Americans" articles, that they are within quotation marks... they are what some Italian citizens--born, raised and still living in Italy--think about Americans. Some of these are actual quotes directly from Italian nationals that I found in online discussions, or others are a conglomerate of several quotes I gathered either from talking to Italians directly or from Internet discussions. The tone of your message seems to be taking ME personally to task for saying these words or having these views. (Obviously, you haven't had time to read the hundreds of other posts written by me on this blog... to really get to know who I am). In fact, I have a similar background as you-- My Dad was born in Molfetta, my Mom was born here (her parents from Naples). We used all sorts of Italian (or Southern dialect) expressions in our household growing up. My parents did not teach us to speak Italian. Mom said she wanted an "all-American family" for us five kids. In fact, right now, my 12 year old son carries on this "Italian-American" tradition... he spent three weeks in Italy with us last year, he now calls me Babbo, he makes pasta with me, he loves his Italian roots... So, please don't think of ME as the ignorant one here. This particular quote represents the views of some (not all) Italian Nationals toward the (as they see it) overly enthusiastic and misplaced pride we Italian-Americans feel for our Italian heritage. Hey, my wife is half Italian (Sicilian) and half Polish and even she feels a stronger connection with her Italian roots. BTW... to add to this feeling from Italian Nationals toward Italian-Americans, before I went to Italy I researched the Finzi's still residing in Molfetta, my Dad's birthplace. I tried to contact several before the trip. All I got was silence. I was told by other Italian friends that they don't quite understand how we long to get connected to fragments of our family lineage still living in the Homeland of Italy. They lost track of lines of their family who left "their family and their country" so long ago. It's how they feel.... not me. Still, I would not call them "ignorant" either. It's just a very different point of view. In my personal view, Italians today in Italy have evolved separately and have become VERY different from Italian Americans. If you read my earlier posts about my experiences with Italians and the way they live and work, you'll see that I had lots of issues with their attitudes and parts of their lifestyle. We Italian-Americans are a hybrid... We are not Italians. We should be proud of that fact.
10/20/2015 10:16:32 am
Jerry, my deepest apologies for misdirecting my response. I overlooked the quotation marks on your posted comment.
10/21/2015 07:29:47 am
Hey.... no ignorance here... just a lot of passion. (We're Italian, right?) I find the attitude of a lot of Italians toward Italian-Americans and Americans in general as a two sided, schizophrenic affair. On one hand, they love everything about "'Merica" and just about every young person I conversed with talked pretty good English and confessed to me the desire to come to the U.S. for their career (I met wannabee musicians, artists, designers, pizzamakers, etc.). I always recommended to them that they look inward toward their own country--that opportunities and creativity is right there in front of them. (Hey... I tried living/working in Paris in 1974... so I know what it's like to try and "make it" in another country). They also love our fashions, music and TV shows (I didn't understand how they were still watching Jersey Shore and the A-Team... really?? This was last year! Even their infomercials are styled like ours, albeit with much more er... abundant women.) ....
7/26/2022 08:37:45 pm
I realize this post is from 2015, but I do hope the writer and his viewers see this opinion anyways. I enjoyed the thoroughly educating and entertaining back and forth between two "passionate" Italian Americans, Teresa and Jerry Finzi! But what I wat to opine on is the last line in the quote, "If someone of Chinese decent is born in Germany or England they are German or English. Period."
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