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The Case of Italy

The Societal Impact of COVID-19 in a Fragmented Society

Jan Martin Rossi

Italy was among the first countries in the European Union (EU) where the presence of COVID-19 became apparent. On 9 March, the Italian government became the first in Europe to announce an unprecedented national lockdown, effectively paralyzing the

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Italian alliances between commoning and law

Framing new regulations by challenging rules in Naples

Antonio Vesco and Alexandros Kioupkiolis

The “commons” have become a rallying point of social mobilization against privatization and a linchpin of collective civic empowerment and democratic renewal in several countries. What singles out the Italian “laboratory” of urban commons in recent years is the coalescence of pro-commons lawyers with activists, movements, and grassroots collectives. The central role played by law in the Italian commons network must be read in the light of the distinctive forms that regulations and rules assume in specific contexts. Drawing on ethnographic research conducted between 2018 and 2019, this article focuses on the case of Naples and the reinvention of the legal tradition of “civic use.” Our account of the daily practices pursued by a Neapolitan community of commoners—L’Asilo—delves into the role played by the law and its representatives in a political context that has always been the subject of stigmatization.

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The First Italo-Ethiopian Clash over the Control of Eritrea and the Origins of Rome's Imperialism

Nikolaos Mavropoulos

political tensions. 3 This article is about Italian colonialism; it seeks to answer the question: how can we define liberal Italy's early drive to obtain colonies? On the one hand, it can safely be claimed that almost all the literature about the former

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Looking for a Space to Breathe

Decolonising Italian Cities

Elisabetta Campagni

Federazione delle Resistenze's ‘Urban Guerrilla’ and the Harnet Street's Memorial Archive with the Roman Eritrean Diasporas Those who still infest the legends around the jail of Dekhamere are white devils. They are Italian devils (Riccardo

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American and British Efforts to Democratize Schoolbooks in Occupied Italy and Germany from 1943 to 1949

Daniela R. P. Weiner

At the end of the Second World War, education was seen by the Allies as a powerful tool in the remaking of postwar Europe. The Allies believed that the denazification, reorientation, and reeducation of Italian and German children through schools and

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Social Quality in Italy

Chiara Saraceno and Susanna Terracina

Within Europe, Italy exhibits one of the highest levels of internal and regional heterogeneity. This heterogeneity has been long standing (so much so that a research tradition has developed looking at regional diversities as veritable social formations – see e.g. Bagnasco 1977) and at the same time not fixed. Trends in the conditions of social quality, therefore, must be read against this background. In the following paragraphs we will synthetically sketch them, on the basis of the exercise developed within the Social Quality Network (Saraceno and Terracina 2004). We are well aware that this exercise is experimental, and that the system of indicators on which it is based is still largely provisional. Therefore, we will not attempt to draw any conclusion. We will simply present trends within each so-called ‘conditional factor’.

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Policymaking in the Italian Courts

The Affermazione Civile Project and the Struggle over Recognition of Rights for Same-sex Couples in Italy

Lauren A. Anaya

In this article, I use the current struggle over recognition of rights for same-sex couples in Italy as a window on larger policymaking processes. Associazione Radicale Certi Diritti is leading the charge for the recognition of rights for same-sex couples in Italy with its innovative national campaign Affermazione Civile that seeks to obtain marriage equality for same-sex couples in Italy through the deployment of judicial initiatives. Through the Affermazione Civile project, Italian LGBTI rights activists successfully circumvent national politics and advance recognition of same-sex couples' rights in Italy. I argue that recent policy changes with respect to the treatment of this group are direct products of the EU's influence on the national judicial system and demonstrate a continuing trend towards increased judicial activism at the expense of national politics. This article illustrates how the EU influences the making of national public policy outside the economic realm in unanticipated and unintended ways.

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Situating ascriptions of independence and dependence in Italian family capitalism

Sylvia Yanagisako

Recent anthropological studies of Italy have presented vivid and compelling accounts of the anxieties about precarity and economic dependence that have emerged as both state protections of employment and social welfare provisions have weakened. This essay, in contrast, argues that for a substantial sector of the Italian populace, work relations have been governed less by a state‐regulated regime of labour than by kinship ideologies and relations. Since the beginning of industrial manufacturing in the mid‐19th century and continuing into the 21st century, family firms have been the dominant employer in Italy. By following the changes in the silk industry and its allied clothing manufacturing sector in the 25 years from 1985 to 2010, this essay shows how aspirations and ascriptions of economic independence and dependence among firm owners, their children and hired managers are shaped by kinship relations and class trajectories.

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Muslim women, fragmented secularism and the construction of interconnected ‘publics’ in Italy

Ruba Salih

This contribution will focus on the debates and questions arising in Italy around public Islam, young Muslim women and secularism. These debates shed a new light on the nature of Italian secularism, ultimately helping to reposition the accusation towards Islam as a threat to the secular public sphere. The paper aims at suggesting that there is hardly anything that makes Islam in Italy exceptionally and uniquely alien to secularism. Rather than Muslim constituencies, in Italy it is the Catholic Church that is striving to re‐occupy a position in the public sphere that has been shrinking since the 1970s. On the other hand, rather than challenging the nature of secularism and liberalism in Italy, young Muslim women are contributing to their expansion and redefinition.

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The Long Homecoming

Ghanaian Migrant Business and Power in Veneto, Italy

Hans Lucht

Beraku and their different trajectories in life. Joseph and PK belong to a group of migrant workers from the small Guan village of Senya Beraku in Ghana's Central Region, who came to Italy about 10 years ago in a push that saw more than 25–50 Senya people