Tag Archives: migration

Migration to Australia: recent arrivals from Italy

Riccardo Armillei (Deakin) & Bruno Mascitelli (Swinburne)

300px-Australian_Census_2011_demographic_map_-_Australia_by_SLA_-_BCP_field_1126_Italian_Total_Responses.svgBetween 1945 and 1983 some 400,000 Italians, usually unskilled and with limited education, came to Australia as ‘permanent and long term arrivals’, most arriving between 1952 and 1970. Thereafter the annual intake fell steadily. However, in recent years Australia has become a destination for a new generation of migrants from Italy – this time young highly-educated Italians seeking fresh opportunities. The earlier wave has been exhaustively studied by demographers, linguists and sociologists but little is known or understood about the recent migrants. While their small numbers hardly indicate a new ‘boom’ time (pace Dalla Bernadina, Grigoletti & Pianelli, 2013; Grigoletti & Pianelli, 2014, Marchese, 2014), their experiences are nonetheless worthy of investigation. To this end, we used surveys and focus groups to examine the temporary and permanent migration from Italy to Australia over the period between 2004, when the so-called Working Holiday Arrangement between the two states was agreed, and 2016 (Armillei & Mascitelli, 2016).   Continue reading

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Objects in Italian life and culture

9781349948741In 2014 Paolo Bartoloni (NUI, Galway) gave a series of lectures in Australia on material culture and objects in the context of migration, multiculturalism, and transnational culture. The book containing some of the work he presented is about to be published as Objects in Italian Life and Culture: Fiction, Migration, and Artificiality (Palgrave Macmillan). Two of the five chapters focus on Australia. The chapter on migration is based on the exhibition Belongings: Post-WW2 Migration Memories and Journeys at the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences in Sydney, and the chapter ‘Multicultural and Transcultural Objects’ is a discussion of the Italian Forum in Sydney. The other three chapters provide a discussion of theoretical perspectives on material culture (“Meaningful Places”), objects in literature and cinema (“Fictional Objects”), and the adaptation of tradition and authenticity in contemporary culture (“Objects as Props”).

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Italian Cinema: special issue of FULGOR

7fbb78_783f57d50c2240d4b0f23be547a41fbeA special issue on Italian cinema (vol. 5, issue 1, April 2016) has just been published by FULGOR, the Flinders University Languages Group Online Review. The issue, guest-edited by Luciana d’Arcangeli with support from Laura Lori and Stefano Bona, covers a wide range of topics: trends in contemporary Italian cinema (Vito Zagarrio), including the treatment of gender and socio-sexual identity (Luciana d’Arcangeli); the presence of Italians in the early history of the Australian film industry (Gino Moliterno); a comparison of the texts and sub-texts of the films made by Italian directors in China between 1957 and 2012 (Stefano Bona); an analysis of the encounters between migrant Italians and indigenous Australians in Diego Cienetiempo’s Far Away is Home. La Storia di Clely (2012) (Matteo Dutto); and an interpretation of Costanza Quatriglio’s film of Vincenzo Rabito’s autobiography Terra matta (David Moss). FULGOR is a peer-reviewed journal affiliated with the Department of Languages and Applied Linguistics, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia. Back issues can be found here.

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Documentary Film and Migration in Twentieth-century Italy – CfP

20477368The Journal of Italian Cinema and Media Studies is calling for proposals of contributions to a special issue, Documentary Film and Migration in Twentieth-century Italy, guest-edited by Gaoheng Zhang (Department of Italian Studies, University of Toronto). Long before the 2015 refugee and migrant crisis captured international attention, Italy was at the forefront of the European management of post-Cold War mass immigration from around the globe. Only thirty years earlier the country was itself undergoing a large-scale internal migration from the South to the North, and from countryside to city. Still earlier, between the late 19th and mid-20th centuries,  Italians had emigrated to the Americas, Northern Europe, Australia, and elsewhere, constituting one of the most significant labor diasporas in modern history. These events have been decisive for Italy as a nation, a people and a cultural entity. How did the only new major art form developed in the twentieth century—the cinema—represent and influence these migrations? In particular, how did documentary cinema—arguably contemporary Italy’s most versatile and prolific film genre—respond to and reflect on the migratory flows?

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‘A different telling’: voice, dream, theatre

Whyte_MUSEOYou are cordially invited to a reading from A Different Telling, a one-act play by Leisa Whyte, with local actors Sebastian Bertoli and Georgia Whyte, live music by Alison Davey, at Museo Italiano, 199 Faraday Street, Carlton on Tuesday 1 September, 6.30pm (free event but booking essential). About the play: as we grow older, many of us have a desire to know more about our heritage: it helps us define who we are and to make sense of the way we interact with others. Mia, a young university student is deliberating how to tackle her latest assignment on identity. Thinking and questioning out loud, she realises that the voice answering from behind the local bar where she is ‘studying’ is actually that of her great-great-grandfather, Giacomo Rossi, a 19th century Italian immigrant. Initially thinking she must be dreaming, Mia plays along with her imagination, only to find the ‘voice’ is starting to reveal a story she has never known about her ancestors and their journey to a new life in Australia. As the play develops, Giacomo becomes so real to Mia she can almost reach out and touch him: she feels his pain as he talks of the tragedies that befell his family and their resilience despite it all. She is beginning to piece together her story, character by character: to understand more fully her own identity. Or has it, in fact, been just a dream… Continue reading

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Life in Bonegilla, 1947-1971

image003The Bonegilla Migrant Reception and Training Centre was the first and largest of 23 such centres in Australia. Originally an army camp, it was converted to accommodate and educate migrants and help them to find work. Between 1947 and 1971 many of the 350,000 Italian migrants (42,000 of them under the Assisted Passage Scheme) and several thousand refugees from the areas annexed by Yugoslavia after 1945 passed through Bonegilla. This exhibition of photographs, Braving Bonegilla, 4-14 June 2015 at the Museo Italiano, Carlton, documents the daily life of Italians in the camp: families striving to make their huts home under Spartan conditions, men studying English, groups of friends playing music and enjoying outings, as well as photographs taken during the so-called Bonegilla riots in 1952, and pictures of a wedding and a funeral. The opening event on 3 June at 6.30pm (RSVP here or call (03) 9349 9021) will include men and women who lived through Bonegilla.

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Jo-Anne Duggan Essay Prize 2015

Jo-Anne Duggan Essay Prize PosterWe are delighted to announce the outcome of the inaugural Jo-Anne Duggan Essay Prize sponsored by ACIS. The winner is Sally Grant, ECR (PhD, University of Sydney, 2013) for her essay on ‘The Eighteenth-Century Experience of the Veneto Country House: Andrea Urbani’s Decoration of Villa Vendramin Calergi’s Room of the Gardens’. Two entrants were highly commended: Crystal Filep (PhD candidate, University of Otago) for her creative work and exegesis ‘Intersection Unbounded’ and Kyra Giorgi, ECR (PhD, La Trobe University, 2013) for her essay ‘La speranza: Spaces of hoping, waiting and dreaming in Italian migration’.  The Panel for the Prize has provided the following summaries of the three entries …. Continue reading

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Italian Modernities: recent contributions

431820_cover430961_coverTwo volumes have just been published in the Italian Modernities series (Peter Lang). Eccentricity and Sameness by Charlotte Ross contests the view that female same-sex desire is virtually absent from Italian literature and cultural production in the modern era.  Focusing on texts published between 1860 and 1939, she analyses the evolution of discourses on female same-sex desire in and across a wide variety of genres: bestsellers, texts with limited distribution and subject to censorship, and translations from other languages. Her wide-ranging discussion, incoporating scientists who condemned the degenerate nature of «Sapphic» desire, erotic publications that revelled in the pleasures of female same-sex intimacy, and portrayals of homoerotic desire by female writers, opens up new approaches to the discourses of sexuality in modern Italy. The second volume, Destination Italy, edited by Emma Bond, Guido Bonsaver and Federico Falloppa, is the product of a two-year interdisciplinary research project into representations of migration to Italy which brings together contributions from migration studies, linguistics, media, literature and film studies as well as essays by practitioners and activists. The discussions of how media, literature and cinema contribute to the public perception of migrants also provide a snapshot of the ways different representations of immigration capture, and fail to capture, migrant experiences.

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The ‘Problem’ of Migrant Health in Post-War Australia

Eureka copyOn 25 March, 6.30pm at the Museo Italiano (199 Faraday Street, Carlton 3053), Dr Eureka Henrich (University of Leicester) will give a talk on The ‘Problem’ of Migrant Health in Post-War Australia.

In the quarter-century following the Second World War Australia embarked upon an unprecedented immigration programme which encouraged 2.5 million people to move to the other side of the world. Assisted passage agreements were brokered with Britain, the Netherlands, Italy, West Germany, Austria, Greece, Turkey and Yugoslavia, as well as with the International Refugee Organisation, the latter facilitating the journeys of more than 170,000 refugees from Central and Eastern Europe. These migrants were intended to increase national security by bolstering the Australian population, and to provide the essential labour for an expanding economy. The Department of Information, together with the Department of Immigration orchestrated a publicity campaign to allay domestic concerns about the arrival of so many ‘Poms’ and ‘foreigners’. They emphasised the health and assimilability of these ‘New Australians’, portraying robust and friendly young workers keen to shake off their pasts and become fellow citizens. To attract migrants, an image of Australia as a ‘healthy haven’ was cultivated, with an emphasis on quality of life and an abundance of opportunities.

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Migrations today: how to analyse them?

superdiversityMigration in its many forms continues to be central to the history and politics of Italy and Australia. But how should we analyse the extraordinary complexity of its contemporary global flows? The continuing expansion in the number of countries of origin, variety of destinations and legal statuses of movers has created a bewilderingly complex series of movements that the conventional instruments for classifying and understanding migrations no longer seem able to handle. One term invented to characterise current patterns and their consequences for the social make-up of destinations is ‘super-diversity’. The most recent issue of Ethnic and Racial Studies (2015, vol.38, no.4), free access online, is devoted to the conceptual issues, theoretical implications and empirical applications of the term.

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