Black Italians

A History that Still Needs to be Written

A Dialogue with Mauro Valeri

Feb 14, 2018 in Villa Sassetti as part of the La Pietra Dialogues at NYU Florence

(In Italian with English translations)

Italy has always been multiethnic, multireligious and multiracial, but has never admitted it. During Italy’s fascist period a vision of a monoethnic, monoreligious and monoracial country was promoted through racial laws, propaganda and actions against blacks and ‘mixed’ Italians, ‘i meticci’, and colonial subjects, among others, and their contributions to Italian history were negated. This understanding of national identity, unfortunately, persists today. It has prevented anti-racism movements from building a solid foundation in Italy and, more recently, serving as an effective counter power to the return of neo-fascism. In this Dialogue, Mauro Valeri will remind us of the contributions of black and ‘mixed race’ Italians and will discuss new forms of racism in Italian society and why anti-racism movements have been late to confront them.

In collaboration with Black History Month Florence