Posts tagged ‘Emilia’

September 2, 2016

Why I defend Charlie Hebdo’s cartoon (and why I am angry at another bad joke)

by felicitamodna82
Not-so-important foreword:

I resume my blog, hoping my huge issues with writing will be successfully dealt with in a few months…

What can one do with stereotypes?

Stereotypes and prejudices are widespread, and sometimes serve as a source of inspiration or as basis for humour or satire (please note that, even though there is a relation between those two, they are not the same thing). Right now, politically correctness is challenging many common approaches to humour. This is good in most cases, although I have seen some huge misunderstandings, and also many cases of outright censorship, the latter of which I don’t support. Calling somebody out on his or her implicit support of shit like racism, sexism and co. allows for a discussion on the matter; censorship usually acts more as the broom sweeping the dirt under the carpet than anything else, not to mention that not all politically incorrect jokes are necessarily  a sign of implicit support of racism, sexism, ableism, whatever.


Today, the Italian-speaking internet is roaring and rioting because of Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons about the earthquake in Central Italy (one of the centres next to the epicentre being Amatrice, the town which gave the name to the amatriciana sauce. Yes, this is relevant).

Yesterday, my not-so-humble person found in her Facebook homepage a dumb link, shared by a commercial state-funded Austrian radio station. The link was stating a very racist thing about, well, Italians. I am a poor Italian living in Austria (relevant as well).

Now, let’s review the type of humour, the content, and the source,  and let’s analyse my very different reaction to those links.

Charlie Hebdo and the new Italian speciality

charlie hebdo earthquake

CH’s cartoon: Italian-style seism. All rights to CH itself.

(I am not fluent in French, but I understand it a little: it says “penne with tomato sauce”, “gratin penne” and “lasagne”).

CH’s cartoon hits hard, and I recognize it. After the initial impact, though, my brain immediately connected the menu-like style of the captions to the typical image of Italy abroad so far (Italian speciality: pasta & pizza) and to the sad, recurring episodes of mass murder by community inaction almost every time there is an earthquake in Italy. Considering that the country is full of active faults, considering the last 20 years [I remember Modena-Reggio (Po plain) 1996, Assisi and co. 1997?, Parma-Reggio-Modena (mountain districts) 2008, l’Aquila 2009, Modena-Ferrara (Po plain) 2012], considering the costs for modernising/restoring/rebuilding cannot be covered by sig. and sig. ra Average Italian, and considering that money in Italy gets thrown out of the window in every possible way except by funding interventions in this sense, well, I think the evil satiric magazine hit the right spot.

Right now, the new Italian speciality is going to be wounding and killing Italian citizens by letting their houses collapse on them, not pasta (or pizza, for all that matters). Bravo, Charlie Hebdo. I read the cartoon like this and I appreciated it. (now I fear I will discover they did not mean it like that and I will be publicly stoned. Not “stoned” the funny way, the other).

Please note that the same magnitude of the above mentioned earthquakes in, say, Japan would not have had all the casualties, the damages and the homeless people we  had.

I appreciated the Italian black humour and satire blog Umore Maligno even more. Following the wave of indignation, they published:

Emilia-Romagna protests against CH’s cartoon: “Hey, the lasagne would be US!””

They made fun of the very strange indignation of some who have been Charlie for as long as only certain targets were targeted, or who spread sexism every single day “because it’s funny”; they got the point with lasagne being from Emilia and the amatriciana sauce from Amatrice; they might have reminded many readers that people in Modena and Ferrara still live in containers (or maybe they just wanted to get more clicks and squirted out some words nobody could ignore? Another stoning for me).

Now, making fun of the dead is bad, bla bla bla, yadda yadda. But these are declared satirical publications: they exploit sarcasm and black humour, and sometimes they even make people think about things. Like in this case. I see no disrespect towards victims, because there really is none. They are depicted as victims even here. Please note that I suffer from PTSD, and one of the things that triggers it is an earthquake. I experienced the 1996 and the 2008 ones, and my closest relatives and friends were hit by the 2012 one, some of them even hard, so spare me the “you don’t know what you are talking about”.

Moreover, Charlie Hebdo clearly still depicts the earthquake victims as victims. I would not say they lacked humanity, after all.

And even if all this does not convince you, it is satire, you either like it or not. I asked my friends to make a black humour and satire contest in case I die…so I’d say I like it. If you don’t, don’t like it, but please don’t make them responsible for the victims and don’t promote shootings (yes, some people are wishing those religious idiots come back and finish the job).

Ö3’s way of using my radio licence money in order to make people even dumber than they already are.

Ö3 is a state Austrian radio station broadcasting commercial stuff. Many of us usually follow it in order to get some news and traffic updates, but apart from a few specials I don’t listen to it.

For some reasons I got to read this in my newsfeed:


People speaking 3 languages: trilingual. People speaking 2 languages: bilingual. People speaking only one language: Italians

Now, why did Frau Ratti get angry at this?

  1. Ö3 is funded by all Austrian residents, even if they are not Austrians. Especially if they are not Austrians.
  2. It is not like the level of the contents they usually publish is particularly high or educational (understatement of the year. Hint:” Frag das ganze Land”), but supporting stereotypes and prejudices is very, very bad. It gets even worse when many people find it amusing, and many others increase the fun by adding that the French are worse.
  3. Partially a corollary of no.1 and no. 2, they are actually supporting people living in Austria to perpetuate what I call “the velvet discrimination” against Italians in Austria. We are not Muslims and we don’t get the hatred and the suspicion other groups get, but somehow too many people approach Italians with ideas stuck in their heads such as we don’t speak languages, we are adorable and trendy stupid people, we are lazy, we are always late (because stupid and lazy), we are only good for working in gastronomy, and many other things. You don’t know what I mean if you haven’t experienced it. I have been often discriminated because I am Italian, and the fact that it is not a hateful or violent discrimination does not make it a discrimination any less.
  4. They are not making satire or use sarcasm; they don’t want to create paradoxical situations where humour is not just meant as a means to laugh because the paradox itself emerges and makes you question the real issue behind the joke. They are not making extremely tasteless jokes for shock value on a blog followed only by fans of the genre. They are not even Italians criticizing what’s wrong in the Peninsula. They seriously think they are funny (and cute because they spend their holidays in Italy).

I will leave out the fact that bashing at a numerically relevant community is quite stupid, because I simply don’t approve that a state radio station supports discrimination (soft or hard, does not matter), spreads it (they obviously have some good coverage), and uses everybody’s money to do it. The size of the targeted group should not be a criterion for accepting a discriminating joke or not.

My answer was:

ö3 comment

Only two likes for my sarcasm. That speaks volumes…

Translation: “All right. Now I hope that I – being a trilingual Italian woman – will be exempted from paying TV and radio licence fee from now on, because there is no way I pay it in order to fund the dumbing down of the current population”.

Ach, I thought I was sooo funny…



February 24, 2013

Sto giro non voto il mio carnefice – Dichiarazioni di non-voto ragionato

by felicitamodna82

Questo giro no, non ce l’ho fatta.

Tralasciando il fatto che non hanno fatto in tempo ad iscrivermi all’AIRE, per cui, dovendo io lavorare tutti i giorni e non avendo abbastanza soldi, non sarei comunque riuscita a tornare a Modena, questo giro ho usato la scheda elettorale per accendere il camino (in realtà è una metafora, dato che il camino l’ho acceso con le pagine di un giornale, precisamente con l’inserto sportivo del Traunsteiner Tagblatt del giorno seguente alle dimissioni di Seppele, ma lasciatemi almeno un po’ di libertà pseudo-letteraria, suvvia!)

Dopo l’indegno martirio toccato alla mia unica patria, Modena, provincia che contribuiva prima del sisma all’1% del PIL e che dopo il sisma “eh, ragassssi, non ci sono i soldi per ricostruire, l’Europa, la crisi, il Monte dei Pas…opps, no questo non doveva scapparmi”…

Dopo l’indegno attacco allo stato sociale, che prosegue senza che i difensori del welfare state riescano a trovare il loro Raimondo Montecuccoli (anzi, si moltiplicano gli ottomani che vorrebbero addirittura privatizzare l’acqua e cose del genere!) …

Dopo la buffonata dell'”Aboliamo le province” detto da gente che 1) non sa a cosa servano le province, e se lo sapesse direbbe semmai di abolirle come organo politico oppure di abolire, piuttosto, le regioni, delle quali abbiamo fatto a meno fino al 1970, oppure di tagliare, semplicemente, le competenze doppie/ridondanti 2) gente che sa benissimo cosa siano le province, così come sa anche che in Europa le <province> ci sono, semplicemente non necessitano di elezioni e non fanno le stesse cose dei comuni e delle <regioni>, ma ama lucidare e agitare specchietti per le allodole …

Dopo le solite buffonate in seguito alle quali i politici si aumentano sempre gli stipendi, la RAI – che sarebbe l’unica cosa da privatizzare – non si privatizza, al Sud continuano ad essere assunti migliaia di forestali e bidelli e – mi dicono . ad essere proposte quelle zone franche fiscali che a noi, terremotati modenesi (e a reggiani, ferraresi, bolognesi, mantovani) vengono negate…

Dopo aver constatato che, se non sono ladri, sono stupidi ed ignoranti (ogni riferimento ad amori per teorie complottiste non è casuale, anzi, è proprio voluto)…

…mi dispiace, questo giro non sceglierò il mio prossimo carnefice! (forse, nel moderno mondo post-industriale sarebbe più giusto parlare di esecutore fallimentare, ma “carnefice” è molto più eufonico).

Vorrei un giorno vedere un’Europa dei popoli, in cui stato sociale, lingue e dialetti, tradizioni ed accoglienza vengono preservati e convivono, in cui i vecchi legami spezzati da confini tracciati nei salotti dei politici vengono riscoperti e rinverditi, in cui “accoglienza” non significa buonismo, oppure tratta degli schiavi ed assurda perdita delle varie differenze fra città e città, paese e paese in nome di un’omologazione buona forse per un consumatore stupido ecc…

Fino a quel momento non lo avrete il mio voto. Non sento il bisogno di benedire la distruzione dell’Europa in atto con la mia cultura e la mia intelligenza,  che sono frutto dell’essere sopravvissuti ad un’infanzia tremenda, dell’amore di una famiglia nuova che ha dato tutto e delle mie fatiche bestiali giorno dopo giorno per tirare avanti tutti i miei progetti.

Se anche voi non avete votato ed intendete lasciare la vostra dichiarazione di non-voto, nei limiti del codice penale e civile ed in una lingua a me comprensibile, potete usare la funzione “commenta”. Non è necessario pensarla come me; certo, per coerenza, magari non venite a scrivere sul mio blog che volete che le donne tornino ai fornelli e sottomesse all’uomo o cose del genere. Se volete finire in galera, collezionate querele, o se siete dei rompicoglioni, ci sono altre piattaforme sul web, quindi via dal bàli , come si dice a Modena. Almeno qui sopra ho il potere supremo, quindi non sprecate il vostro tempo a postare cose che finiranno nel rusco. (pattume in modenese).

May 22, 2012

Of nature in my home land…20th May 2012 (terremoto, earthquake, Erdbeben)

by felicitamodna82

Work in progress!!!! 20.05 first quakes/Erste Beben; 29.05 new big quakes after a week of afterquakes/neue großen Beben nach einer Woche Nachbeben!!!!!!! Updates/Aktualisierungen —-> terremoto. Help&Videos —>below/Hilfe&Videos—>unten

As many of you probably already know, an earthquake hit the Provinces of Modena and Ferrara and some Municipalities in Mantova, Bologna, Reggio Emilia, Rovigo. The Northern districts of Modena are hardly hit. Wie viele von euch wahrscheinlich schon wissen, wurden die Provinzen Modena und Ferrara und einige Gemeinden in Mantua, Bologna, Reggio Emilia, Rovigo von einem Erdbeben betroffen. Die nördlichen Bezirken in Modena sind stark betroffen.

When I travel home for a while, coming from Salzburg, I usually take the train. The German-Austrian EC München-Bologna crosses the Po river in Ostiglia and then enters my homeland in Mirandola, nevertheless travelling far away from the beautiful city of the Picos.  Finally the train crosses San Felice sul Panaro. Wide, open, fertile fields and the warm and beautiful centre of San Felice with the church and the castle used to be my welcome home. Not anymore, I guess. Wenn ich ein bisschen heim sein will, fahre ich  mit dem Zug ab Salzburg. Der DB-ÖBB EC München-Bologna überbruckt den Po-Fluss in Ostiglia und kommt dann in meine Heimat in Mirandola, obwohl er weit von der schönen Stadt der Pico fährt. Endlich durchfährt der Zug San Felice sul Panaro. Breite, offene, fruchtbare Felder und die warme und schöne Altstadt von San Felice mit der Kirche und dem Schloss waren in der Regel mein “Willkommen heim”. Nicht mehr, befürchte ich.

Thousands lost their home. Tausende haben ihr Daheim verloren. Migliaia hanno perso casa.

Industries, shops, farms are closed due to damages or even destructions and thus we are not able to work in order to pay for repairing or rebuilding using our own wages. Industrien, Geschäfte und Bauernhöfe sind aufgrund der Schaden oder sogar der Zerstörungen geschlossen und deswegen können wir nicht arbeiten, um das Geld zum renovieren oder wiederaufbauen zu verdienen.

A huge part of our cultural heritage is gone. Castles, towers, the church where the famous Humanist Pico della Mirandola’s parents were laid to rest are destroyed or damaged. Ein großer Teil unseres kulturellen Erbgutes ist verloren. Schlösser, Türme, die Kirche, in welcher die Eltern des berühmten Humanist Pico della Mirandola begraben wurde, sind zerstört oder beschädigt. (Update: Church/Kirche San Francesco destroyed/zerstört)


How to help? Wie kann man helfen?

1) Buy products from Modena and Ferrara, so that we can rise again! Produkte aus Modena und Ferrara kaufen, so dass wir wieder aufstehen können!

Parmigiano-Reggiano from the Province of Modena/aus der Provinz Modena (especially/besonders Mirandola, San Felice sul Panaro, Finale Emilia, Camposanto, Ravarino, San Possidonio, Cavezzo, Medolla) and from the Municipalities of/und aus der Gemeinden San Giovanni in Persiceto and Crevalcore. I should get in touch with some farmers who should deliver, so just comment here to show your interest. Ich sollte einige Bauern kontaktieren, die liefern können dürften, so einfach hier kommentieren, um in Kontakt zu treten. >>>This production is experiencing an EMERGENCY!!!  Diese Produktion ist in NOT!!!<<<  Photogallery damages/Schäden

Grana Padano, prosciutto, salumi:try to check that they come from/bitte Herkunft möglichst kontrollieren: Mirandola, San Felice sul Panaro, Finale Emilia, Camposanto, Ravarino, San Possidonio, Cavezzo, Medolla (Prov. Modena), Crevalcore, San Giovanni in Persiceto (Prov. Bologna), Bondeno, Sant´Agostino (Ferrara).

Fruit, jam, sauces/Obst, Marmelade und Soßen

Aceto Balsamico di Modena

Biomedical equipment/devices and so on from/Medizintechnische Geräte aus Mirandola, Medolla, Concordia, Cavezzo, San Felice sul Panaro, San Possidonio, San Prospero, Carpi.


other products (see origin above)/andere Produkte (Herkunft oben ansehen)


Confcooperative Modena

Consorzio Parmigiano-Reggiano

Fliliera Corta

Biomedicale/Biomedical production/medizintechnische Produktion (Gabriele Testi – Linkiesta)  & (Annalisa Dall’Oca – Il Fatto Quotidiano) & (Marco Sarti – Linkiesta)

Epicentres/Epizentren + Info  (Main quakes/Hauptbeben: 20.05.2012 = Finale Emilia, Modena, 4:04 GMT+1; 29.05.2012 = Medolla, Modena, 9:04 GMT+1)
INGV BLOG —->      —->terremoto pianura padana emiliana


Scientific information/Wissenschaftliche Information (The Po plain in the surroundings is now 15 cm higher and 3-4 Richter quakes continue every day! Die Po-Ebene in der Umgebung ist jetzt 15 cm höher und 3-4- Richter Beben gehen weiter!)

The Fould/Die Verwerfung

2) Information (Italian)à-di-Mirandola/200112844612

A nice blog whose concept says: ” In a time of crisis and problems we believe that Italy can manage her way out of troubles by using her human and natural resources, the beauty of her territory, the richness of her products”. Great idea! It features many proposals from the damaged territories:

3) Contact me!/Mich kontaktieren!

We are going to organise several initiatives (i.e. in Salzburg and surroundings) you can help with or make a small donation for you can afford. I am a simple girl from the Modenese people, so you won´t have to fear that your efforts get wasted in political tricks. Our idea is: make industries and shops work again, so that we can rebuild houses and start rebuilding monuments with our own efforts, then funding reconstruction of monuments. We want them as they used to be, or even better. Wir werden verschiedene Initiativen organisieren (z.B. in Salzburg und Umgebung), in welchen ihr helfen könnt oder für welche eine kleine Spende möglich ist, die keine finanzielle Belastung wird. Ich bin ein einfaches Mädchen aus dem modenesischen Volk, also muss man nicht befürchten, dass eure Bemühungen in politischen Spielen weggeschmissen werden. Unsere Idee ist: machten wir Industrien und Geschäfte wieder produktions- oder arbeitsfähig, so dass wir die Wiedererrichtung der Häuser und  teilweise der Monumente mit unseren Löhnen/Gehältern selber bezahlen können. Dann Wiedererrichtung der Monumente unterstützen. Wir wollen sie, wie sie früher waren, oder sogar besser!

I am able to work with several groups on location(I plan to travel home on the 19th June). Especially people living around Salzburg could comment here in order to get in touch with me/Ich kann mit verschiedenen Gruppen vom Ort aribeiten (Ich habe geplant, am 19. Juni heim zu fahren). Besonders Personen aus dem Raum Salzburg könnten hier kommentieren, um mit mir in Kontakt zu treten.

Some information about helping several autonomous camps in the city of Rovereto sulla Secchia

4) Offerte/Donations/Spenden     A) – S)  choose! auswählen; H)- O)=  single municipalities/einzelne Gemeinden

(you may ask me for further information)/Sie können mich zusätzliche Informationen fragen):

a) Banca Unicredit, piazza Grande 40, Modena.

Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber: provinciale di Modena Interventi di solidarietà
IBAN IT 52 M 02008 12930 00000 3398693
BIC/Swift code UNCRITM147Y
Causale/Payment purpose/Verwendungszweck: Terremoto maggio 2012

b) Or/Oder click here/hier

c) Or another account from the/oder ein anderes Konto aus der Partito della Rifondazione Comunista ((for workers who cannot work/für Arbeiter, die nicht arbeiten können)

Via Menganti 8 – 40133 Bologna

IBAN: IT 06 L 02008 12932 000003118146

Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck: cassa resistenza terremoto

d) or another account from the/oder ein anderes Konto aus der “Movimento 5 stelle”:

IBAN: IT 76 N 02008 02460 000102085251.


Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber Gruppo Assembleare Movimento 5 Emilia-Romagna

Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck Aiuto alle popolazioni colpite dal terremoto in Emilia-Romagna

e) Caritas Diocesana di Bologna c/o Banca Popolare dell’Emilia Romagna

Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber: Arcidiocesi di Bologna

IBAN IT27Y0538702400000000000555

Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck: terremoto in Emilia Romagna.

f) Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber + Banca: EMIL BANCA

IBAN: IT 06 L 07072 02404 000017741960

Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck “Emergenza terremoto Emilia”.


IBAN: IT02 N031 2702 4100 0000 000 1 494


Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck EMERGENZA TERREMOTO EMILIA-ROMAGNA

Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber: Partito Democratico Emilia-Romagna

h) Comune di Mirandola (beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber)

IBAN IT87N0503466850000000005050,

SWIFT code BAPPIT21405

causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck “terremoto maggio 2012”.

i) Comune di San Felice sul Panaro (Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber)
IBAN: IT84X0503466980000000000100
Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck “terremoto maggio 2012” (or a thought from you/oder einen Gedank von Ihnen)

l) Comune di Finale Emilia (Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber)

IBAN IT82E0611566750000000133314



Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck “SOS emergenza terremoto”

m) Group from the/Gruppe aus der Comune di Rovereto sulla Secchia (NOT/NICHT Rovereto di Trento!!!!!!!!)

Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber Bianchini Roberto per associazione “Rovereto insieme”.

IBAN IT 03 B 05034 12802 000 000 009 170

All Municipalities here on the right side of the home page/Alle Gemeinden hier rechts auf der Anfangseite

n) Novi di Modena-Rovereto- S. Antonio in Mercadello

Banca Unicredit

IT 38 N 02008 66903 000100560218


o) Comune di Concordia sulla Secchia

Beneficiario/account holder/Kontoinhaber: Tesoreria del Comune di Concordia sulla Secchia

Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck: Emergenza Terremoto Concordia Maggio 2012

IBAN: IT 57 H 05387 66730 000000944949

Bank: Banca Popolare dell’Emilia Romagna, Filiale di Concordia

p) If you live in Germany, you may consider this opportunity. The city of Ostfildern has a partnership with Mirandola and therefore opened a dedicated account/Wenn Sie in Deutschland leben, können Sie vielleicht diese Möglichkeit wahrnehmen. Die Stadt Ostfildern hat eine Partnerschaft mit Mirandola und hat deswegen ein Konto eröffnet:

q) Rock no war ONLUS (no profit)

Beneficiario/Account holder/Kontoinhaber “Rock No War Onlus”

Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck   “Terremoto Emilia 2012”
IBAN IT13 Q 03395 66780 CC00 2000 3842

or buy their tees

r) Save art and monuments! Kunst und Denkmäler retten!

Intestatario/account holder/Kontoinhaber “I viaggi nella storia”

IBAN: IT33 T033 5901 6001 0000 0067 385 –

Swift code: BCITITMX

Causale/payment purpose/Verwendungszweck “Adotta un monumento, Terremoto Emilia”

s) Buy T-Shirts or posters for fundraising!/T-Shirts  oder Plakate zwecks Geldsammlung kaufen

Grazie! Thanks! Danke!

For further information or for ideas, contact me! Für weitere Informationen/Anregungen stehe ich gerne zur Verfügung!

Information (Press/Presse)

– especially/besonders Mirandola (neglected but severely damaged/vernachlässigt aber stark beschädigt) – click and surf ModenaToday

Please, ignore stupid comments or contents about pasta and insurances. The tragedy is that many people cannot work if their activities don´t sell these products, don´t have warehouses anymore etc…! /Bitte, dumme Kommentare oder Inhalte über Pasta und Versicherungen ignorieren. Die Tragödie ist, dass viele Personen  nicht arbeiten können, wenn die Betriebe diese Produkte nicht verkaufen, kein Lager mehr haben usw…!

The nightmare/Der Albtraum

20.5.2012 5.9 Richter (2nd one features the horrible roar/der zweite enthält das fürchtbare Dröhnen)

20.5,2012 Aftershocks/Nachbeben

29.5.2012  5.8 Richter

29.5.2012   2 Aftershocks/ 2 Nachbeben

We will manage it alone with a smile…/Wir werden es allein mit einem Lächeln schaffen… (Alberto Mattioli) – MODENESI

January 6, 2011

Retroactive history, political interest or just ignorance?

by felicitamodna82

This is fun…

As some of you may know, 2011 will be the 150. anniversary of Italy as a nation (though in an incomplete form, since the so-called Unità has been reached, revised and – well – contested during the 20th century…and although history and identity of Italy are still quite discussed or contested).

As part of celebrations, an exhibition has been organised. Title:

La bella Italia. Arte e identità delle città capitali

(beautiful Italy. Art and identity of capital cities)

There is a little problem. The exhibition should feature art from – I quote –  pre-unification “capital cities”...

Now, anybody who knows Italian history will soon recognize that…Bologna and Palermo WERE NOT capital cities, and have never been capital cities in the immediate pre-unification European asset, just to make it clear. On the contrary,  TRUE AND IMPORTANT CAPITAL CITIES LIKE MODENA AND PARMA (see Duchy of Modena e Reggio, Duchy of Parma) have been completely ignored. Any history student would be granted a “fail” in his/her exam for listing Bologna and Palermo as pre-Italian unification capital cities, these people are granted a lot of (public) money (in heavily indebted Italy) for doing this job BAD…

A mistake in the rationale, a shame and a stupid choice, since Modena and Parma are beautiful cities with wonderful and important cathedrals and well-established art museums and no exibition should be ashamed to feature them.

Politicians already tried to underline the mistake:

Please note that I had to agree with Giovanardi. This hurts! Never had I thought such a thing would happen… 😀

Now, as a historian I should try to understand:

  1. Did they fall victim of a sort-of-a-lapsus, writing “pre-unification capital cities” but thinking “today’s capital cities of Regioni(administrative unit similar to German or Austrian Land)” Or trying to create an innovative and provocative theory, making history from 1970 onwards retroactive? mm…
  2. Are they trying to perpetuate certain mythologies related to the history of unification and to the further political developments (Italy is a good thing, Austrians and Germans are the bad; the asset of nowadays – where a few cities catalyse any possible investment in public money – is the only one possible and so on? )
  3. Are they simply ignorant?

Who knows…

I believe Modena should start a serious reflection about her history, her historians…and definitely do not cooperate if asked for art pieces from her museums for these celebration. Reflect, rethink, boycott.

And, quoting the South Tyrolean slogan:  Los von Bologna! (away from Bologna!). We are only destroying our past and our future! We should re-integrate the old Emilia Longobarda and strengthen our ties to Central Europe (and no, not Eastern-Central Europe and not in the way Marchionne would wish…)

“organizzatori per capitali intendono quelle che hanno avuto un ruolo rilevante” ( “capital cities” are intended by the organisers as cities which played an important role).
What does this mean?
1) capital city has a definite meaning. Say “main city”, “main centre” – more appropriate – and, in any case, define in the rationale how you will use the definition. Rule No. 1 in every scientific work
2) Arguing that Modena and Parma ( even Reggio Emilia) did not play any important role before unification seems hard to every historian…

“Bologna as representative of whole Emilia”…and here once again the ignorance of almost an entire nation, ignoring that Bologna was not Emilia and this idea of Emilia has been invented. This will be finally shown in my Ph.D. Thesis. And…if art historians want to forge a new definition and a new theory, making an “Emilian art” exist” and creating a definition for a representative of this art…well, they should once again re-write their rationale, exposing their theory and using their own scientific language, not “ours”. “Capitali pre-unitarie” has a definite meaning if used without specification (“dell’arte” = “of art”). Even in this meaning, many people would not agree with the Piemontese choice…

Another one, from the Corriere della Sera:

«Forse c’è stato un equivoco — afferma il direttore della Reggia di Venaria, Alberto Vanelli —: questa non è una mostra storica sulle capitali d’Italia, ma una rassegna che punta a dimostrare come l’arte delle varie città, ben prima dell’unità d’Italia, avesse avuto un ruolo universale e unificante.

Then you should, again, read my comments about the way you developed your rationale, or abstract, or exposè, or razionale scientifico, as you prefer. Using the expression “Capitali pre-unitarie”  as shown on the site implies a certain meaning. I will not repeat what I exposed above.

“Creative history” as new level of public use of history?

Once upon a time there was Tyrol. Then Savoia Italy took away a strategic piece of land from it and made “Alto Adige” out of it. Many claim “it’s Italy, they are trentini, they must speak Italian”.

The same happened (beginning actually some years before…) some miles southwards on the Brennerstraße. Former capitals were subordinated to Bologna, the idea of Emilia Longobarda was gradually destroyed until the wonderful creation of Emilia-Romagna and of an Emilian Bologna. Guelph Bologna always fought Ghibelline Modena but only dominated Romagna and belonged later to the Papal State.

Political implications for these ideologies are quite clear. (see above).

I am waiting for my book about Austria to be published and for my Ph.D. thesis to be completed to have the possibility to bring new issues in the cultural and political debate around these themes, using ideas and evidences!

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