Skip to main content

View Diary: I just realized I starred in a racist school program 50 years ago (103 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  I wish my mother's family had made it to SF (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tonedevil, TheDuckManCometh, NCJan, Powell

    They immigrated in 1904 from "the old country" and my grandfather found work in the coal mines of Indiana. They were from northern Italy near the French border, and they settled in a part of town with French immigrants and dropped the Italian language altogether in favor of French.

    My mother's nickname was "Frenchie," and even though the family never denied being Italian, they were desperate to assimilate, and later made English-only the rule of the house.  

    My mother's family lost their father early on, and my grandmother raised seven children by herself. The boys went to work in the mines at age fourteen, and the younger kids helped their mom with the struggle to get by.

    My father's family lost their father to the flu epidemic in 1919, and they also grew up in poverty, but they never completely accepted my mother because of her Italian-ness.

    To paraphrase Kurt Vonnegut: Pure joy is waking up one morning to realize that your high school class will NOT be running the country for the next four years.

    by ebrann on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 01:53:05 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Thanks for your personal story. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NCJan

      In my spouse's family, they went from Italian-speaking (well ... a dialect thereof) to English-only in a single generation. The grandchildren and great-grandchildren today speak and understand only English.

      The second and third generations were all given typical American names. Several in the fourth generation (my kid included) have been given beautiful Italian first and middle names -- to match the many vowels of the last name.

      There is little stigma anymore ... or there wasn't till those Jersey Shore kids came along.  ;)

      •  My mother's family dropped the final vowel (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Powell

        of their name, Barra became Barr. I gave my son an Italian middle name, Gino, which is what all his friends call him.

        I never did like the Flintstones because I thought maybe "Yogi Bear" was subtly dissing Yogi Berra. vbg

        To paraphrase Kurt Vonnegut: Pure joy is waking up one morning to realize that your high school class will NOT be running the country for the next four years.

        by ebrann on Sun Dec 09, 2012 at 04:27:40 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site