NIAF News Monthly
A monthly bulletin for Italian American organizations and media outlets, dedicated to promoting the language, culture and traditions of Italians and Italian Americans.
March/April 2011

National Italian American Celebrity Lifestyle Magazine

La Festa Della Donna-International Women’s Day La Festa Della Donna, celebrated on March 8, is a holiday where Italian women receive a special yellow mimosa f ower. The flowers serve as a token of appreciation and as an expression of female solidarity. Origins of this holiday can be traced back to two events that took place outside of Italy. The first event occurred on March 8, 1857 when women working in a garment factory in New York went on strike leading to the formation of the first woman’s union in the United States. The second event took place 60 years later when Russian women led a strike calling for “bread and peace” during World War I and the Russian Revolution.

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Michelangelo’s David is in Trouble Michelangelo’s David could topple over according to ANSA, Italy’s national wire service. Underground architect Fernando De Simone has warned that work on a new high-speed train line in
Italy could cause the statue to fall. Tremors from tunnel excavation could wear on David’s ankles, which are riddled with microfissures. “If the statue is not moved before digging begins, it will collapse,” De Simone said. “The risk of collapse or slippage in the marble of the statue’s lower joints will be very high if the resonance caused by excavation machinery for the high-speed train tunnel, as well as the vibrations of passing trains thereafter, are added to existing vibrations caused by groups of 60 visitors at a time…” While De Simone has been encouraging Tuscany and Florence to move the statue of David to an underground museum that should be built, steps have not been done.

Beyond DiMaggio: Italian Americans in BaseballBaseball holds a special place in the hearts of Americans and Italian Americans across the country. Lawrence Baldassaro, professor emeritus of Italian at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee aims to explore the love of baseball in his new book Beyond DiMaggio: Italian Americans in Baseball. Some of the most famous players were Italian Americans including Berra, Rizzuto, Torre, Santo Piazza and Conigliaro. The book explains the “chronological history of the evolution of Italian Americans in professional baseball” and focuses attention on the challenging aspects of being an Italian American baseball player during the 20th century. Discrimination and family obligations were two contributing factors that limited the number of Italian players in the first third of the 20th century, however, regardless of these obstacles, Italian Americans were able to create a strong preence in the baseball world that is still remembered and celebrated today.

March 2011 marked the 150th anniversary of the unification of Italy. This historical event is known as Il Risorgimento, or Resurgence of Italy. Prior to the unifi cation, the Italian peninsula was composed of separate states under different rule. The most famous face of Italian Unifi cation was Giuseppe Garibaldi. As an Italian national hero, he led the Italian patriots in an effort to combine the states and territories of Italy into a unifi ed country. To celebrate Italy @150, Hon. Fabrizio Marcelli, Consul General of Italy in San Francisco, is having a birthday party on March 21 in Union Square in San Francisco, Calif, with a prosecco toast and birthday cake. Check out other events around the country at
News Monthly Coordinator Natasha Borato 1860 19th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009

Contributing Writer Gina Ghilardi and Ginan Nakshbendi, Research Carlo Piccolo, Director of Communications Elissa Ruffi no, News Monthly Coordinator Natasha Borato 1860 19th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009 Contributing Writer Gina Ghilardi and Ginan Nakshbendi, Research Carlo Piccolo, Director of Communications Elissa Ruffi no, Director of Pubilcations M. Soladay Please send your group or city’s news of Italian-American exhibits, cultural events, scholarships and special events to Elissa Ruffi no at the above address or e-mail Events/programs noted

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