Inventing Italian America through the Photograph

Lauren Bartone (University of California, Berkeley)

The ubiquity of film photography by the mid 20th century in the United States offered Southern Italian immigrants and their children the opportunity to create their own representation of a newly emerging cultural identity. The creation, display, and preservation of these images in both domestic and commercial settings during the post-war context served a range of purposes, from the representation of personal narrative to the cultivation of an idealized Italy. This tradition paralleled a shift in identity for migrants from the periphery of a unified Italy to the center of American popular culture as Italian Americans.

Part of 04-13 Inventing Italy from Its Edges, Friday, October 14, 8:30 am–10:00 am