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  • The National Organization of Italian American Women (NOIAW), awarded three "Wise Women" at their annual New York Region Epiphany Celebration. Members, family and friends gathered to honor three women who exemplify what it means to be a role model: Elizabeth F. Defeis, professor at Seton Hall University’s School of Law; Dr. Teresa Ghilarducci, Chair in Economic Policy Analysis at The New School for Social Research and Paola Prestini, composer, co-founder and artistic director of the National Sawdust.
  • Capri. Certosa
    Last Sunday volunteers turned out to clean up what had once been a sacred river on the ancient Appian Way, the Almone. Increasingly ordinary citizens are participating in conservation of Italy's extraordinarily rich cultural heritage.
  • Our cover story is about “Grandparents and Grandchildren in Italian America,” a series of conversations available this summer on TV and online at www.i-Italy.org.
  • Its culture czars hope that in 2015 Italy will finally cash in on its museums, historic archives, Renaissance and Baroque palazzi and archaeological sites. Until now, income from what is the richest single heritage in Europe yields a measly annual net profit of under $37 million. Needless to say, most of the income the heritage generates goes to paying the wages of personnel. Finally, after months of debate, on Dec. 19 Culture Minister Dario Franceschini signed into law a decree to relaunch the heritage sites with more help from private sources.
  • For the sixth year in a row experts from sixteen nations convened in the tranquil Umbrian city of Amelia June 27 – 29, for an interdisciplinary conference organized by the Association for Research into Crimes against Art (ARCA). Among the speakers from as far away as New Zealand and New York were detectives and bookworms, archeologists and art historians, police and intelligence officers, and attorneys and sitting judges. High on the agenda was the protection of the cultural heritage in wartime
  • Op-Eds
    Judith Harris(August 21, 2013)
    Italy's "Culture Crunch" is the gulf between the country's splendid but over-abundant cultural heritage - art, architecture, archaeology, cityscape, landscape - and the terrible difficulty in caring and maintaining such riches. Massimo Bray, Minister of Culture and Tourism, has just appointed a "Commission for the Revision of the Code for the Cultural Heritage and Landscape." Its goal is to harmonize the legal norms affecting the care and feeding of the heritage with the various institutions charged with enacting them. This is an important step, but only a beginning.
  • When angry trade unions who represent the custodians that guard the Colosseum had imposed a 3-1/2 hour strike, tourists were left standing in long lines as the sun beat down upon their heads. Like the situation at Pompeii, this new cultural heritage disaster and the plight of the tourists made headlines worldwide, giving the managers of the Italian cultural heritage a well publicized black eye. Then came the news, delivered last week to Parliament: the Cultural Heritage Ministry has unpaid bills of some $50 million, caused by repeated budget cuts. Worst of all, funds to pay for work to protect and maintain the Italian heritage have been slashed by 58% in the past five years.
  • President Giorgio Napolitano has asked ten "sages" to elaborate a list of crucial issues around which the politicians should rally. But whatever they decide, it is a safe bet that Italy's magnificent cultural heritage will not be on their list. UNESCO considers the Italian cultural heritage the world's greatest single assemblage. And yet, as a new Eurostat report shows, Italian expenditures on maintaining that heritage amount to a mere 1.1% of its GNP as compared with the 2.2 average for the rest of Europe. This places Italy at the very bottom of the list of those European states protecting, and investing in, their cultural heritage. Archaeologist Salvatore Settis is the foremost authority protesting this.