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Political Activism and Cultural Politics

Political Activism and Cultural Politics


July 21, 2008

Mujeres Migrantes Italianas

Laura E. Ruberto
Exhibit Poster, "Mirades de luz" (Argentina)

An exhibit in Argentina highlights the role Italian immigrant women in Buenos Aires played in the development of Argentina’s past and present.

June 29, 2008

The European Union’s Immigration Policy and Italian Immigrants in Latin America

Laura E. Ruberto
Immigration Authorization Stamp, Argentina

Invoking Italy’s history of emigration, activists and politicians in Latin America condemn the European Union’s latest anti-immigration stand.

May 6, 2008

Gli intellettuali rispondono alla crisi in Italia

Laura E. Ruberto
Brianza Popolare
Antonio Gramsci

Sulla scia di Gramsci: gli intellettuali di oggi e la crisi italiana

April 12, 2008

A Gramscian Podcast on Women Workers and Migration

Laura E. Ruberto
photo, Anna Collette
Book cover, "Gramsci, Migration, and the Representation of Women's Work in Italy and the U.S."

Podcasting on Gramsci, immigrant women, labor, and the history of San Diego's cannery workers.


Click to listen

March 8, 2008

Bread and Roses or “Mimose”?

Laura E. Ruberto
"Per te mondina" (Cgil magazine)
1949 Strike (braccianti and mondine)

Where has over 100 years of honoring women gotten us?

December 31, 2007

Peppino Marotto, Poet, Activist, Gramscian

Laura E. Ruberto
Song about Gramsci by Peppino Marotto

Revolutionary poet and activist shot and killed at 82 years.

January 12, 2008

Emile de Antonio's documentaries and radical art

Laura E. Ruberto
Underground, documentary by Emile de Antonio, Mary Lampson, and Haskell Wexler

The documentary films of Emile de Antonio, another chapter in Italian American radicalism.

January 22, 2008

On the Anniversary of Gramsci’s Birth, a Few Words about Writing Letters

Laura E. Ruberto
Antonio Gramsci

In re-reading Antonio Gramsci's letters from prison in memory of his birthday, one can't help but wonder about the current state of cyberwriting.

February 1, 2008

Blogofascism and the Cybermob

Laura E. Ruberto
Grand Lake Theater, Oakland, California

Meta-bloggando on the (virtual) use of fascism.

March 1, 2008

Gramsci, Cinema, Photography and Music

Laura E. Ruberto
Casa del Cinema, Villa Borghese, Rome

Listening, watching, and thinking about culture as a political tool.

August 18, 2008

Breastfeeding Breasts!

Laura E. Ruberto
Tina Modotti
"Baby Nursing" (1926)

In honor of my two young children and World Breastfeeding Month, a few thoughts on the work of women’s breasts.

March 4, 2008

Love Costs: Filipinos in Italy and the Movie, "Milan"

Laura E. Ruberto
"Milan" (Star Cinema)
Poster from "Milan" directed by Olivia M. Lamasan, 2004

What better place than Italy for immigrants to find both a job and a lover?

October 26, 2008

Radical Espresso: Mario Savio and Berkeley’s Free Speech Movement

Laura E. Ruberto
Mario Savio's "operation of the machine" speech, Sproul Plaza, UC Berkeley, December 2, 1964

What happens when a Berkeley café lays claim to an Italian American free thinker?

December 24, 2008

“Ti abbraccio teneramente,” Christmas from Prison

Laura E. Ruberto
Antonio Gramsci

A selection of Antonio Gramsci’s Christmas letters from prison.

January 6, 2009

I’ll Have Some Pancetta with My Mob Reference, Please

Laura E. Ruberto
Chip Somodevilla/Getty
Leon Panetta

With Leon Panetta’s potential return to Washington, comes a new focus on his Italian connections.

December 24, 2009

Radical Italian American Christmas Cards

Laura E. Ruberto
Laura E. Ruberto
Mock-up for a Radical Italian American Christmas Card Set, the "Holiday Modotti"

Thinking about next year’s holiday cards, I turn to the leftist artists, Tina Modotti and Pietro di Donato.

January 14, 2010

On Guidos, Gramsci, and Irony Deficiency

Laura E. Ruberto
"Pasquino," by Nicolas Beatrizet (engraving,1550)

Why Italian Americans need to take action, a Pasquinian response to some recent debates.

July 4, 2009

Excavating New Futures: The Cairano 7x Experience

Laura E. Ruberto
Cairano 7x Poster
Cairano 7x

An ambitious week-long event in a small village in the province of Avellino crossed many boundaries and suggested many new possibilities.

June 6, 2009

Among Roman Ruins, the Italian Communist Party’s School

Laura E. Ruberto
Laura E. Ruberto
La Scuola di Frattocchie, The Italian Communist Party's Political School, outside of Rome


May 16, 2009

Remembering Maria Margotti (1915-1949)

Laura E. Ruberto
"Per te mondina" (Cgil-funded pamphlet)
Eulogy for Maria Margotti, fallen mondina, May 17, 1949

A rice worker, a partisan, a woman, a mother, Maria Margotti was killed sixty years ago by carabinieri during a strike on May 17, 1949.

March 7, 2009

Fabricating Women’s Histories

Laura E. Ruberto
Tilde Capomazza and Marisa Ombra
8 Marzo: Una storia lunga un secolo

Italy’s construction and memory of International Women’s Day.

June 1, 2010

The Über-Country: Italy at 150 Years

Laura E. Ruberto
"The Contribution of a Great Race" 1924
cover of the THE CONTRIBUTION OF A GREAT RACE, published in San Francisco, 1924, by “The Italians of California to their American Brothers"

Some thoughts on Italy’s mythical status, migrating identities, and the creation of an online salon to talk about it all.

December 2, 2009

Californians Sell Little Italy, One Crate at a Time

Laura E. Ruberto
(Label image, P.V.)
Angelina Tokay varietal grape label

Fruit and Vegetable Crate Labels in California and the Italian Americans They Created

April 11, 2009

The Invisible Victims of the Abruzzo Earthquake

Laura E. Ruberto
Samuele Pellecchia/Prospekt, for The New York Times
L'Aquila, The Dome of Santa Maria del Suffragio, destroyed by the April 6 earthquake

An unknown number of documented and undocumented immigrants in Abruzzo have died or lost their homes because of the recent earthquake.

December 24, 2010

Vince Guaraldi--“the sound of Yuletide on these shores”

Laura E. Ruberto
Charles M. Schulz/Vince Guaraldi
Italian version of Charlie Brown's Christmas Album, 1979

Some Italian-American notes about the man behind the music of Charlie Brown’s Christmas.

March 2, 2011

The Case of the Missing Fasanella Painting

Laura E. Ruberto
Ralph Fasanella
"Welcome Home Boys" (1953)

How I uncovered that the City of Oakland, the Oakland Public Library, the Oakland Museum of California, and the Oakland International Airport have misplaced Ralph Fasanella’s painting, "Welcome Home Boys".

March 13, 2014

Mobsters in Sin City

Laura E. Ruberto

The Las Vegas Mob Museum doesn’t know what to do with all those Italian American gangsters everyone loves to talk about so much.

September 6, 2017

New Italian Migrations to the United States

Laura E. Ruberto
Book cover with a photograph of the Valentini family boarding an airplane in Italy for New York City, March 25, 1963.

Reimagining the last seventy years of Italian migration.