Were You Always an Italian?: Ancestors and Other Icons of Italian America

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W. W. Norton & Company, May 1, 2001 - Literary Collections - 219 pages
6 Reviews
Maria Laurino sifts through the stereotypes bedeviling Italian Americans to deliver a penetrating and hilarious examination of third-generation ethnic identity. With "intelligence and honesty" (Arizona Republic), she writes about guidos, bimbettes, and mammoni (mama's boys in Italy); examines the clashing aesthetics of Giorgio Armani and Gianni Versace; and unravels the etymology of southern Italian dialect words like gavone and bubidabetz. According to Frances Mayes, she navigates the conflicting forces of ethnicity "with humor and wisdom."
 

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Review: Were You Always an Italian?: Ancestors and Other Icons of Italian America

User Review  - Louis Spirito - Goodreads

A fun read for anyone but especially those of us who hail from the Boot. Read full review

Review: Were You Always an Italian?: Ancestors and Other Icons of Italian America

User Review  - Lesley - Goodreads

Although Laurino set out to explore her ancestry and the impact that heritage on her life, her words spoke to me as well. Some of the recollections made me chortle while others caused great pain and ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Beginnings
13
Tainted Soil
30
Clothes
54
Rome
77
Words
100
Bensonhurst
121
Faith
156
Work
175
Ancestors
188
Beginnings
215
Acknowledgments
217

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About the author (2001)

Maria Laurino is a journalist & essayist living in New York City. Her work has appeared in numerous publications including the "New York Times" & the "Village Voice".

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