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Emigration – Day of Celebration 2012
Italians and What it means to be Italian, Outside the Borders….
On May 16th, 2012, the Day of Celebration of Emigration 2012, at Palazzo Marini Rome, the ASMEF (Associazione Mezzogiorno e Futuro) together with APIA (Associazione Parlamentare Italia-Argentina) hosted a conference entitled “Italiani e italianita’, oltreconfini…” (Italians and What it means to be Italian, Outside the Borders….)
Opening remarks were made by several illustrious guests including Severino Nappi, Secretary for Labor and Emigration for the Campania Region, Giuseppe Angeli, Deputy of the Commission for Foreign Affairs for the PDL party, and Franco Narducci, Vice President of the Commission of Foreign Affairs for the PD party.
The round table discussion focused on emigration and the importance of protecting the archives of memory. It was agreed by all that the lack of economic resources has made it always more difficult for immigrants to maintain ties with their country of origin. Narducci stressed that we must continue to strongly defend our cultural model. He cited the budgets that other members of the European Community have made available for language and cultural initiatives, and revealed that Italy’s budget has dropped from 75 million in 2008 to 14 million today (other sources indicate a number closer to 6.2 million).
Dottsa. Profumo presented Genoa’s project MUMA – Galata, Museo del Mare e Immigrazione (Museum of the Sea and Immigration), which houses an archive of documents and fotos that tell the stories of over 100 years of Italian immigration. Mina Capassi, Director of “Un Mondo di Italiani” (A World of Italians) discussed the compilation of the “First Dictionary of Italian Emigration”, a wonderful initiative aimed at recuperating our roots. Dr. Aldo Pace, Director of the Foundation Instituto Banco di Napoli reminds us that the Bank of Napoli was the first to open a branch in New York City for its Italian Immigrants at the turn of the century, and reiterates the need to invest in Italy and Italians once again.
On October 8th, the conference will move to the John J. Calandra Institute in New York City where Dean Anthony J. Tamburri along with other distinguished speakers will continue the discussion of Italians… Outside the Borders.