A History that Still Needs to be Written
La Pietra Dialogues, NYU Florence, Villa Sassetti, 14.02.2018
Italy has always been multiethnic, multireligious and multiracial, but has never admitted it. During Italy’s fascist period a vision of a monoethnic, monoreligious and monoracial country was promoted through racial laws, propaganda and actions against blacks and mixed Italians, i meticci, and colonial subjects, among others, and their contributions to Italian history were negated. This understanding of national identity, unfortunately, persists today. It has prevented anti-racism movements from building a solid foundation in Italy and, more recently, serving as an effective counter power to the return of neo-fascism. In this Dialogue, Mauro Valeri will remind us of the contributions of black and mixed race Italians and will discuss new forms of racism in Italian society and why anti-racism movements have been late to confront them.
Mauro Valeri (1960 – 2019) was an Italian sociologist and psychotherapist. His research focused on the phenomena of racism and xenophobia, in particular within the world of sport. He has taught Sociology of Ethnic Relations at La Sapienza University in Rome. His publications include: Il generale nero. Domenico Mondelli: bersagliere, aviatore e ardito (2015), Mario Balotelli. Vincitore nel pallone (2014), Negro, Ebreo, Comunista. Alessandro Sinigaglia, venti anni in lotta contro il fascismo (2010), Nero di Roma. Storia di Leone Jacovacci, l’invincibile mulatto italico (2008) and Black Italians. Atleti neri in maglia azzurra (2006).