LIFE & PEOPLE

Searching for the origins of La Bella Lingua (Part I): Dante and Florence

It appears that modern Italy was unified by literature long before it existed as a single nation on the map. Although up to a century and a half ago...

Italians: explorers of knowledge

October is a special month for Italian-Americans, dedicated as it is to their heritage and history. October is also the month remembering the coming...

Sardinian seasilk, the world’s rarest thread

Rarer than diamonds, more expensive than platinum and found only in a few secret Sardinian sea caves, seasilk is the stuff of legend. Its long silky...

What did the Romans do for us?

Throughout history, civilizations have come and gone from the Italian peninsula, each one leaving its mark. From the Etruscans’ stonework to Greek...

Tradition, and good, old fashioned habits can make you 100: at least in Italy

Italy is becoming a country of old men and women. Or is it? True, Il Bel Paese does have the lowest natality rates of the continent, with only 7.8...

San Francisco’s Italian bookstores - past and present

In 1880 George Cavalli established the Libreria Italiana and Cavalli Book Store on Stockton Street in San Francisco’s Little Italy. The shop became...

Tom Perrotta: “The Steinbeck of Suburbia”

As a writer, Tom Perrotta may not be a household name but chances are you’re familiar with some of the films based on his books. Perrotta’s novel...

There’s more to Italian Fall than you think

My memories of the Fall are so stereotipically Italian they could go on a postcard. Those I cherish the most, of course, come from my childhood and...

Mandello del Lario: iconic Moto Guzzi, Manzoni and lakeside mountains

My dad had a bright red Moto Guzzi that in its day was quite sporty and cool, with its spreading eagle wings on the motorbike logo.  He was dating my...

Venice’s lions still roar

Rome has the she-wolf. Sicily has the 3-legged Medusa. And Turin has il toro, the bull. Up in the northeast, however, the lagoon city of Venice chose...

Chestnuts: Tuscany’s other celebrated Fall fruit

The last gasps of summer play out over the Italian landscape – a land grateful for the sun’s energizing warmth, but oh-so-ready for fall’s cooler...

When reality is made on stage: Spettacolo and the living theatre of Monticchiello

Truly poetic and delicately beautiful: this could be Spettacolo in a nutshell. But I wouldn’t pay it justice, because there’s so much more to it than...

Credito Emiliano and Parmigiano: the curious story of the bank taking cheese as investment collateral

It was 1953 when Credito Emiliano, a relatively small bank based in the region of Emilia Romagna, started taking wheels of Parmigiano Reggiano as a...

Gio Solimene Ross: The first First Lady of Seattle Opera

In 1975, just a dozen years after its founding, Seattle Opera created an international sensation when it staged the complete production of Richard...

Angela Missoni: 20 years of artistry and innovation

Twenty years have passed since Angela Missoni took the helm of the family fashion house founded by her visionary parents Ottavio and Rosita, who...

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