From Paesani to White Ethnics: The Italian Experience in Philadelphia
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From Paesani to White Ethnics analyzes the process by which people of Italian descent renegotiated their sense of community and ethnic self-perception in Philadelphia from the late nineteenth century to the end of the twentieth. At the turn of the century, Italian immigrants who arrived in Philadelphia originally formed allegiances and social clusters based on their localistic, provincial, or regional ties. By the late 1930's, however, the emergence of Italian nationalism together with the end of mass migration from Italy and the appearance of an American-born second generation of individuals with loose ties to the land of their parents contributed to bring together Italian Americans from disparate local backgrounds and helped them to develop a common national identity that they had lacked upon arrival in the United States.