The essays that we present in the 2000 issue of Altreitalie have a dual purpose: that of reviewing the over twenty years of research that the Giovanni Agnelli Foundation has devoted to the study of the Italians in the world and that relating to ethnic Italian studies in the context of the various national historiographies. Claudier Gorlier analyses the area dedicated to United States and Canadian studies, tracing three decades of debate on Italo-American identity through the publications of the Giovanni Agnelli Foundation. The author then examines the evolution of the relationship between the mother country and the Italians in the New World, demonstrating how it has led to the birth of a great, but not unique, transatlantic Italy. Anthony Tamburri provides a fine overview of the developments in Italo-American literature and literary criticism. The difficult relationship between ethnic literature and United States literature is here reappraised in the light of the change in the ethnic identity which, thanks also to the literary criticism, is beginning to leave the strait-jacket of Italian/American dualism and breaking through the cultural boundaries. Rovilio Costa tells the story of the difficult beginning of studies on Italian immigration in Brazil and affectionately remembers how research on the diffusion of Italian culture in Brazil, with the immigrants as the carriers, was started by the Giovanni Agnelli Foundation. Maria Rosaria Stabili in «Italians in Chile: an historiographical appraisal», after outlining the main features of the Italian emigration, quantitatively not especially significant, but important because of the contribution to the economic and social growth of the country, explores the reasons for the persistently low level of interest shown by Italian and Chilean scholars in deepening the research on the Italian presence in Chile. Gaetano Rando retraces the phases of the Italian settlement of the Australian continent. He then looks at the Italo-Australian studies focusing on the main research areas, providing an up to date bibliography on the history, sociology, language, literature, memoirs, poetry and theatre of the Australians of Italian origin.


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