Konstantina Zanou (Columbia University) in conversation with Claudio Fogu (UC Santa Barbara) on the occasion of the publication of his book:
The Fishing Net and the Spider Web. Mediterranean Imaginaries and the Making of Italians(Palgrave, 2020)
The book explores the role of Mediterranean imaginaries in one of the preeminent tropes of Italian history: the formation or ‘making of’ Italians. While previous scholarship on the construction of Italian identity has often focused too narrowly on the territorial notion of the nation-state, and over-identified Italy with its capital, Rome, this book highlights the importance of the Mediterranean Sea to the development of Italian collective imaginaries. From this perspective, this book re-interprets key historical processes and actors in the history of modern Italy, and thereby challenges mainstream interpretations of Italian collective identity as weak or incomplete. Ultimately, it argues that Mediterranean imaginaries acted as counterweights to the solidification of a ‘national’ Italian identity, and still constitute alternative but equally viable modes of collective belonging.
This event is part of the Italian and Mediterranean Colloquium series, sponsored by the European Institute & the Department of Italian.
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