Tag Archives: school

Spaghetti/Knödel in the South Tyrol

280px-Language_distribution_in_South_Tyrol,_Italy_2011,_enSouth Tyrol, situated on the border between Austria and Italy, has been considered a ‘peace model’ by many nation-states since the creation of the province’s autonomy statutes. The aim of those statutes was to allow for minority protection of the German- and Ladin-speaking communities while also permitting Austria to be the ‘protector’ of South Tyrol even though the province is situated in Italy. A by-product of the statutes was the creation of the ‘separate but equal’ education system, which allowed the German-, Italian- and Ladin-speaking communities to have individual schools in order to protect their culture and language identity. In recent years marriages between members of different language groups have increased and a requirement for applicants for certain civil service positions to have an adequate comprehension of the L2 or in some cases L3 has been imposed. In ‘Half spaghetti-half Knödel: cultural division through the lens of language learning‘ Anne Wand has examined how the South Tyrolean school system has coped with the changing circumstances and with the pressures to move to an increasingly bilingual society. 

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Parents, children and responsibility in Italy

Angela Biscaldi   University of Milan

AB children's pic 1

“la mamma mi sgrida soprattutto quando lei parla al telefono e io continuo a chiamarla” (bambino di 5 anni)

How do Italians understand their role as parents? What kinds of values do they seek to inculcate in their children?  I devised a research project to try to address these questions, making the concept of ‘parental responsibility’ my key focus. I wanted to explore how important the term was to parents today and how far they tried to make their children aware of their own responsibilities (and what kind they were). I used the town of Cremona as a case-study, interviewing kindergarten teachers and parents with children under six years old, and analysing more than a thousand drawings by young children of family life situations.

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