Seminar Series

The “Philip Cannistraro Seminar Series” is a forum for scholars of the Italian diaspora to share their research in a public forum. In some cases, scholars present work in progress; in other cases, they present completed work that has been published in either article or book form.



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Summer in Perugia

Summer Education Abroad Program at the Università per Stranieri di Perugia

Study Italian language and culture in one of the most beautiful medieval cities in Italy. Perugia, the capital of Umbria, is located halfway between Rome and Florence. It is also near Siena, Assisi, Cortona, and other hill towns in Umbria and Tuscany.

The John D. Calandra Italian American Institute, in collaboration with the European Languages and Literatures Department at Queens College and the University for Foreigners of Perugia (Universitá per Stranieri di Perugia), is offering a summer study abroad program for students interested in Italian language and culture, through Queens College Education Abroad Office. It will be held at one of Italy's oldest and most prestigious centers of Italian language education.

SITE: Universitá per Stranieri di Perugia

DATES: Summer (4 week sessions):
Program I: June 1 - June 30*; July 1 - July 31*
Program II: July 1 - July 31*

Italian Language (3 cr.) and Italian Civilization & Culture (3 cr.)

Intensive Italian (6 cr.)

REQUIREMENTS: 2.5 GPA, a letter of recommendation, and an official transcript

HOUSING: Shared and single rooms with cooking facilities. Single rooms are based on availability.

FINANCIAL AID: If eligible, students must notify their financial aid office at least 15 weeks prior to departure. STOCS grants are available for CUNY students -

Program I: Italian Language & Civilization (6 credits)

Check the Queens College Education Abroad website for more details -

Cost † - Language and Civilization - $1,630 for CUNY students (others slightly higher)

Cost † - Intensive Italian - $1,710 for CUNY students (others slightly higher)

TOTAL COSTS FOR PROGRAM I AND PROGRAM II INCLUDES: CUNY Tuition - 6 credits (4-week session), Application fee, Overseas program costs, One day visit to historic city (ex. Rome or Florence), walking tour of Perugia, tour of nearby town(s), cultural events (films, concerts). [Not offered for continuous session], University orientation, academic testing and advisement, Advisor for the CUNY student will meet two times a week, 4 Week course: Program I - at least 20 hours a week; Program II - 27 hours per week, Certificate of Attendance and Completion of coursework, Grade Report (transcript)


(Approximate) Housing $350 to $600/month, Insurance Fees $35 to $70/month, Meals (self-catering) $400/month · Personal $500/month, Airfare (Round-trip) $800 - $1200


Joseph Grosso
Queens College Education Abroad Office
65-30 Kissena Blvd., 183 Kiely Hall
Flushing, NY 11367
Tel: 718-997-5769
Fax: 718-997-5055

*Exact dates vary
†As of Summer 2011

CUNY/Italy Exchange

The CUNY/ITALY program is a student exchange between The City University of New York/CUNY and selected Italian Universities. The program is designed for highly motivated undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in CUNY who are interested in pursuing course work and/or research in the areas of international business, economics, law, and political science. Students may also take courses in areas of anthropology, archeology, engineering, history, literature, and sociology.

For more information, contact the director of the CUNY/Italy Exchange, Joan Migliori, or click on the line below.

For a copy of the flyer and further information please click here(pdf file)

Italian-American Studies Courses

The Italian-American Studies minor at Queens College is the oldest such college program in existence. Founded in 1973 by Richard Gambino, the program reflects the extraordinary ethnic diversity of New York City’s population and the commitment of Queens College to a multicultural education. Italian-American Studies derives its inspiration from the conviction that ethnicity has been an essential element in both our national development and in the shaping of our individual identities.

Italian-American Studies offers intellectually challenging and culturally enriching courses dealing with the Italian experience in the United States. The curriculum was redesigned in 2000 to meet the needs and interests of students facing the challenges of the 21st century. Our approach is interdisciplinary and rests on the belief that knowledge of Italian history and culture is essential to understanding the Italian presence in American society. The program offers courses in three broad areas: Cultural Studies (literature, film studies, Italian language, art, and music), The Social and Political Heritage (history, political science, sociology, and ethnic studies), and Language Studies (all levels of Italian language).

In Fall 2012, four graduate courses in Italian-American Studies were approved by Queens College and the CUNY Board of Trustees and constitute an option in at least two MA programs at Queens College: the MALS (Master of Artes in Liberal Studies) and the M.A. in Italian. The course titles are: Problematics in Italian/American CultureItalian Americans and Ethnic Relations: Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of InterculturalismItalian American LiteratureItalian/American Cinema: Production and Representation. Professor Gardaphé and Dean Tamburri worked closely with Professors Haller (Italian), Jones (Chair, ELL), Jordan (Chair, MALS), and Paulicelli (Italian) in order to make this a reality. The first course — Italian American Literature — was offered in Spring 2013.

In addition to course offerings from a wide range of academic departments, Italian-American Studies cooperates with faculty teaching in interdisciplinary programs such as Women’s Studies, Film Studies, and other ethnic studies programs.

The Italian-American Studies Program works closely with the John D. Calandra Italian American Institute. Credit-earning internships and practicum experience are available to students through the Calandra Institute.

Calandra Institute Library

Calandra Institute's catalog
Calandra Institute's journals
Cammett* catalog
Cannistraro catalog
Saraceno catalog

The Calandra Institute’s nonlending research library contains books, journals, magazines, and newspapers pertaining to Italian-American and Italian history and culture, including unique collections on economics, literature, and politics. The library is open to scholars and qualified students.

In addition to the more than 1,000 volumes of Institute holdings, the library has acquired three significant collections:

• The Saraceno Collection focuses on Italian history and administration, including an extensive series of reference works, rare volumes, periodicals, and journals from as early as the eighteenth century. Among the many unique items are hundreds of volumes of the Leggi e Decreti (laws and decrees) from the Kingdom of Italy to the Italian Republic up to 1959. This 13,500-volume collection is a gift from the private library of the late Pietro Saraceno, Professor of Administrative History at the University of Rome.

• The Cammett Collection contains the complete works of Antonio Gramsci and other major studies on Italian communism and anti-fascism. This 5,500-volume collection is a gift from the private library of the late John Cammett, Chair of the Department of History, and Provost, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY.

• The Cannistraro Collection has a particular focus on Italian fascism. This 2,000-volume collection is a gift from the private library of the late Philip Cannistraro, Distinguished Professor of History and Italian American Studies, Queens College, CUNY.

These collections are accessible via the search engine on this page. The Saraceno and Cannistraro collections are searchable by title or author, while the Cammett collection is currently searchable by title only.

The library holds the following journals, newspapers, and magazines:

Altre italie
Abruzzo - Italia
American Journal of Semiotics
Annali d'Italianistica
Arba Sicula
Blue Pitcher
Bridges Review
Canadian Journal of Italian Studies
Commento sistematico al Decreto di Concessione dell'Amnistia
Ermeneutica Letteraria
Ethnic Groups
Explorations in Ethnic Studies
Feile Festa
Florida English
Forum Italicum
Germantown Crier
Il Funzionario Degli Enti Locali- L'immigrato Straniero e L'Ente Locale
International Migration Review
Italian Americana
Italian Canadiana
Italian Culture
Italian Journal
Italian Poetry Review
Italian Quarterly
Italian Studies in Southern AfricaJournal of Modern Italian Studies
LEX - Legislazione italiana
Machiavelli Studies
Passages North
Philadelphia Poets
Rivista di Studi Italiani
RLA Romance Language Annual
Sparrow 65
The Harvard College Journal of Italian Amerian History and Culture
The Italian American Review (Calandra Institute)
The Italian American Review (Verrazzano Institute)
The Italianist
The Journal of Italian History
The Journal of Italian Translation
The Literary Review
VIA: Voices in Italian Americana

Archeologia Viva                                           
Culture Front
Italian America                                              
Italian Food and Wine                                   
Italic Way                                          
Italy America                                     
Italy Italy                                            
Mazzei Gazette                                             
NIAF news                                        
Regione Emigrazione                                   
Sicilia Parra                                       
Storia Illustrata                                               

Il Progresso 1890-1974 (microfilm only)

Not all collections of journals, magazines, or newspapers are complete. Please contact Calandra Institute to inquire about specific volumes, issues, and dates.

The Calandra Institute library is open to the public by appointment only, Monday through Friday, 9AM-5PM. To schedule an appointment, call the Institute at 212-642-2094.


Oral History Archive

The idea of this project has two points of origin. First, over the past few years, and especially since I have been at the John D. Calandra Italian American Institute, a number of scholars, particularly of political science, have approached me about research on Italian-American politics in general, as well as with specific regard to some individuals. Unfortunately, we have not been able to give them the assistance they needed, as, instead, we can do more readily with regard to other components of the Italian-American community.

Except for those individuals such as Fiorello LaGuardia and Vito Marcantonio, very little is available on our elected officials. What then makes this even more paradoxical is that, given the large number of elected Italian Americans on both the state and local levels in New York, for sure, as well as in surrounding states in the North East, no significant depository of information on these groups exists. This sets up close to insurmountable challenges for anyone wanting to engage in research on Italian Americans in the political realm. In addition, it potentially places Italian Americans in a minority position with regard to the study of other ethnic groups and politics.

This project thus has it origins in the need to create an oral history archive of Italian-American elected officials in the state of New York, to create a depository of information that has yet to be compiled, and, as a result, ultimately recognize the existence of an Italian-American body politic.

This archive will have multiple uses. It will offer to both the general public as well as to the researcher a first-hand account of, among other issues, the following topics: why the elected official decided to seek office; what her/his political stance is and how it might have developed over the years; how her/his Italian-American background might have shaped the elected official’s political formation.

Dr. Ottorino Cappelli, Professor of Political Science at the Univeristà di Napoli “L’Orientale” and Scholar in Residence at the John D. Calandra Italian American Institute, is the director of this project. Assisted by William Schempp, Producer for Italics, and others from both Italics and the Italian American Digital Project, Dr. Cappelli has thus far interviewed approximately half of the Italian Americans in the state Assembly and Senate.

For each interview, Dr. Cappelli draws up a series of questions each elected official will be asked to address; such questions form the base of the interview process. Each official is then interviewed on camera with the assistance of Mr. Schempp and other staff members of the Calandra Institute’s TV program Italics; each interview is approximately an hour long.

All interviews are then individually stored on the master DV tapes; for research purposes, they will be transferred to DVD format for eventual viewing. Unless approved by the individual elected officials, DVDs will not be copied and distributed; they will remain the property of the Oral History Archive, housed and viewed at the Calandra Institute, and available on the web, through a free subscription, to scholars, students, etc. This will guarantee the integrity of the Archive and the information gathered therein.

Once the interviews have been completed and logged, they will be culled for common points of interest, and a “promotional” video DVD of approximately an hour and a half will be produced in order to highlight the Archive. This video will be available through web streaming and to the public on DVD.

Other eventual outcomes of such an Archive are the various studies (articles and books) that scholars will now be able to conduct, as a result of having consulted the Archive. Such studies to be done by professors, graduate students, and journalists will finally afford Italian-American elected officials their place in regional and national ethnic political history. An Italian-American body politic will begin to take shape, and Italian Americans, from the point of view of both a legislative body and voting block, should ultimately occupy a more significant place within the political landscape of the United States.

Anthony Julian Tamburri


Italian-American Cultural Studies

Italian-American Cultural Studies is concerned with the Italian experience primarily in North America—Canada and the United States. However, attention is also given to the Italian diaspora in other parts of the Americas as well as across other Anglophone areas worldwide.

We understand cultural studies as that mode of analysis that takes as its focal point of argument, as Stuart Hall aptly underscored, “the changing ways of life of societies and groups and the networks of meanings that individuals and groups use to make sense of and to communicate with each other.” What is of primary significance is the emphasis on plurality—i.e., societies and groups—and interconnectedness—i.e., communicating with each other. This sense of plurality and interconnectedness form an obvious and necessary couplet that can result from the changing attitude toward the notion of a separate national group that was ultimately supplanted by any one of the many metaphors and similes that readily signal difference and individuality of all groups that constitute world population.

We also understand cultural studies to transcend the mere description of an ethnic group. Instead, cultural studies should aim at a profound examination and thus explanation, as well as, when appropriate, a diagnosis of the cultural group in question.

For Italian Americans, this includes the study and analysis of all components of Italian America, acknowledging that these topics of analysis may run the gamut from seemingly “pop” to “high” culture.


Contact Us

The John D. Calandra Italian American Institute mailing address is:

25 West 43rd Street, 17th Floor
New York, N.Y. 10036
Telephone #:(212) 642-2094
Fax #:(212) 642-2030
Email is:



The John D. Calandra Italian American Institute is always happy to accommodate interns from across CUNY as well as from other colleges and universities in the general vicinity. We are happy to consider students from all areas of study, though we are especially seeking competency in writing, web design and maintenance, video editing, and camerawork.

We ask you to check first with a sponsoring professor at your college before approaching us. All inquiries should be addressed to email ( and accompanied by a brief description of what you can do and your résumé.



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