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Featured on their home page and in the section: Donnatech
Read the original article written in Italian.
Then, the discovery of the internet and the idea of organizing a virtual community for Italians and enthusiasts of our [Italian] culture brought to life a web site that shares ideas, events, conferences, shows, e-mail and even recipes of the traditional [Italian] kitchen. From this experience Laura Pazzaglia expanded her activity: she was responsible for a portion of the site SfGate.com, from the largest newspaper in San Francisco called the San Francisco Chronicle, she worked as Senior Producer for ZDTV (Technology Television)
I noticed that the books and films that you recommend, including the news, are in English. How many Italian Americans speak Italian?
Let me preface this by saying that virtualitalia.com is targeted to Italian Americans and American enthusiasts of Italian culture: according to a recent census, Americans with Italian origins number approximately 28 million. The majority immigrated to the United states two or more generations ago, therefore many don�t speak the native [Italian] language. We ran a poll on virtualitalia.com and less than 15% of our readers speak even a little Italian.
In the news that you report from Italy, I saw that you speak frequently about returning to "real families" or the Pope: how are the Savoy and representatives of the Vatican seen from a democratic country which is primarily non-Catholic like America?
It�s important to note that Italian Americans have spun-off into their own culture, which recalls that of Italy of 50 or more years ago. The image of Italy is transferred from the grandparents, to parents, to sons, to grand children and the new generation. Virtualitalia.com, for the interest of our readers, represents news of characters from that era and how they have evolved. We give, however, the utmost importance to more recent events to promote the Italy of today.
In the sports articles that you publish, there are more frequent mentions of Ferrari than soccer. Do Italian Americans prefer the Super Bowl?
Certainly, Italian Americans prefer football and other typical American sports, however there is great interest for Ferrari and Italian Soccer.
Who are the most popular Italian singers in the U.S.?
They are Andrea Bocelli, Luciano Pavarotti, Paolo Conte, Eros Rmazzotti, Zucchero, Laura Pausini and Jovanotti. Virtualitalia.com helped to promote Zucchero�s concerts in San Francisco.
Italians in the United States, are they still labeled as a Mafioso or "macaroni", or has the passing of generations created a more open mind?
Unfortunately the image of the Mafioso Italian is still very prevalent in American minds (like in the rest of the world). There is never a shortage of television programs that refer to Italians this way. However, the opposite is also true: An Italian, his culture and country are very appreciated in America and is the dream of many Americans. It�s not by chance that our best-selling book is "Living, Studying and Working in Italy: Everything You Need to Know to Fulfill Your Dreams of Living Abroad"
For [Italians] that have lived in the United States for many years, do they risk idealizing Italy? Usually, one who lives in Italy can be very critical, particularly about the government�
It�s absolutely true that Italy can be idealized and I recognize this in the articles we promote on virtualitalia.com. My own image of Italy comes through the eyes of a 9-year-old girl before she moved to the United States.
I noticed that, with the exception of "La Vita e� Bella", the most recent Italian film that you recommend is from 1994� you also review controversial films like the one on the life of Giovanni Falcone "Il muro di gomma", for example, which refers to the scandal of Ustica.
Italian films are distributed in America with subtitles in English -- this can cause a delay of many years. The video also has to be translated from PAL to NTSC format so that it can be viewed on American television. Unfortunately, we don�t have access to more recent films, otherwise we would promote them gladly.
Would you like to say something personal to our [female] readers?
As a woman, I have had great satisfaction growing-up in the United States, thanks to the respect and equality that exists in this society for women. I do feel, however, the lack of �family� which is more prevalent in Italian society. Also, particularly in California, there is great support for the entrepreneurial spirit. I have achieved personal satisfaction in leading cutting-edge projects in companies like ZDTV, Microsoft, TiVo and the San Francisco Chronicle, among others. With my desire to meet other Italian Americans, and with a little help from the Internet, I�ve been able to establish the destination for enthusiasts of Italian culture. Today, virtualitalia.com, is recognized as the first stop for all North Americans who are interested in Italy.
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