venerdì 29 aprile 2011

La vera incognita della primavera araba saranno le donne (soprattutto per i i regimi teocratici)

(Foto via altracitta.org)

La vera incognita della primavera araba saranno le donne (soprattutto per i regimi teocratici)

Il problema della primavera araba, ne pone uno centrale che ha una forza dirompente maggiore rispetto alla operata riduzione della sfera religiosa a vantaggio di quella privata, già attiva in qualche maniera attraverso la spinta all'individualità del Web2.0 all'interno dei movimenti rivoluzionari arabi. Il problema si chiama: donna; ovvero l' adeguamento del ruolo della donna all'interno delle rivoluzione e delle istanze di democratizzazione delle società del mondo arabo.
In questo momento si può solo prendere atto della potenzialità della forza che gioca il ruolo femminile nella struttura delle nuove aspirazioni democratiche dei popoli arabi; nessuno però è in grado di prevedere gli effetti dirompenti che questo nuovo ruolo della donna nella società araba apporterà. E', a nostro avviso, paragonabile ad una bomba atomica ad orologeria.

Le donne hanno preso, e prendono, parte in massa alle varie rivoluzioni arabe e probabilmente senza le donne queste rivoluzioni non avrebbero avuto le stesse conseguenze o per lo meno la stessa portata. Durante la lotta le donne hanno preso coscienza della lotta stessa come anche della loro forza; una forza iconoclastica e caparbia, ostinata (come è la donna) che già i paesi occidentali hanno sperimentato fin dall'inizio del secolo XX, e che ha generato profondi cambi strutturali nelle stesse società industrializzate.
Se c'è una ratio (inarrestabile) in grado di spezzare le icone eterne dei regimi teocratici questa è la rivendicazione caparbia, ostinatamente lenta ma inarrestabile della natura femminile che è ormai sulla strada dell'affermazione anche nei paesi arabi.
E questa sarà la vera rivoluzione degli anni a venire in quei paesi, che produrrà alterazioni che al momento non sono neanche immaginabili e questa forza sarà la grande avversaria di quegli estremismi islamici che nemmeno le armi degli Stati Uniti e l'appoggio europeo sono stati in grado di piegare.
Il germe ha fecondato l'uovo della rivoluzione. Poi l'uovo gradualmente ma prepotentemente si dischiuderà e dilagherà.

Fabrizio Ulivieri

giovedì 28 aprile 2011

ISTITUTO EUROPEO: Tonight April 28 at 8:30pm Charity Concert pro Japan!!



On March 11, 2011 Japan was hit by its strongest earthquake on record, provoking a devastating tsunami that wreaked havoc and destroyed lives. In the hope that everything may return to normal as soon as possible, the Music Department of the ISTITUTO EUROPEO  in Florence has organized a benefit concert for the victims of the earthquake. The idea for the fund-raising drive was conceived of by a group of Japanese students currently studying Italian, music and opera at the ISTITUTO EUROPEO.

The undisputable skill of these young artists is the fruit of a constant dedication and hard work on the part of the students, all of whom are under the excellent direction of the teachers in the ISTITUTO EUROPEO ’s Department of Music.

It was the ISTITUTO EUROPEO’s idea to decorate the invitation with a series of Japanese cranes. According to the art of origami, the crane is a symbol of hope, life and peace. The tradition of the “thousand cranes” says that whomever folds a thousand origami cranes will have their heart’s deepest wish granted. The “thousand cranes” also recall the story of Sadako, the little girl who survived the Hiroshima bombing only to subsequently contract leukemia. Sadoko, who was familiar with the legend, decided to fold one thousand cranes so that she could continue to live. Her effort did not prolong her life but did encourage the residents of the city to build a statue in her honor in Hiroshima’s Peace Park. The statue represents a girl standing with her hands open and a crane taking flight from her fingertips.

On Thursday, April 28 at 8:30pm, Miyuki Endo, Atsuko Miyamoto and Kazue Yamaguchi will perform a voice concert, accompanied by Kayoko Ikeda on piano. Entrance is free and envelopes will be distributed for those who wish to make a donation. The concert will be held at the Società Dante Alighieri, via Gino Capponi, 4, Florence.

All monies will go directly the Japanese Red Cross.


Stasera alla 20,30 concerto degli artisti dell'ISTITUTO EUROPEO!!



L'11 marzo scorso il più forte terremoto mai registrato in Giappone scuote il Paese  provocando un devastante tsunami che ha seminato distruzione e lutto. Nella speranza che tutto possa tornare al più presto come prima il Dipartimento di Musica dell'ISTITUTO  EUROPEO di Firenze ha organizzato un concerto di beneficenza a favore dei terremotati del Giappone. Il desiderio di lanciare una sottoscrizione di solidarietà a favore del popolo giapponese nasce proprio da un gruppo di studentesse giapponesi, attualmente a Firenze per studiare la lingua, l'opera e la musica italiana All’Istituto Europeo.
L’indiscutibile bravura di questi giovani artisti è frutto di un costante impegno e un assiduo lavoro svolto dagli allievi, sotto l’eccellente direzione degli insegnanti del Dipartimento di Musica dell’ISTITUTO EUROPEO di Firenze.
Dell’ ISTITUTO  EUROPEO  è l'idea di riportare sull'invito la forma della gru giapponese  realizzata secondo l'arte dell'origami simbolo di speranza, di vita e di pace.
La tradizione della piegatura delle mille gru è legata ad una leggenda che dice che chiunque pieghi mille gru avrà i desideri del proprio cuore esauditi. Le "mille gru" richiamano anche la storia di Sadako, la ragazza sopravvissuta alla bomba di Hiroshima ma che esposta alle radiazioni si ammalò di leucemia. Conoscendo la leggenda, Sadako decise di costruire mille gru di carta per continuare a vivere. Il suo sforzo non riuscì ad allungarle la vita, ma spinse gli abitanti della città ad erigerle una statua nel Parco della Pace di Hiroshima. La statua rappresenta una ragazza in piedi con le mani aperte ed una gru che spicca il volo dalla punta delle sue dita.

Giovedì 28 aprile, alle 20.30, presso il Comitato di Firenze della Società Dante Alighieri, via Gino Capponi 4, Firenze, si esibiranno le cantanti Miyuki Endo, Atsuko Miyamoto e Kazue Yamaguchi; accompagnerà al pianoforte Kayoko Ikeda. L'entrata è libera e all'ingresso saranno distribuite delle buste per coloro che vorranno fare un'offerta.
I fondi raccolti verranno devoluti alla Croce Rossa Giapponese.

mercoledì 27 aprile 2011

Firenze: perché le scale mobili alla stazione non funzionano mai?

(foto via florence-tourism.com)



Firenze: perché le scale mobili alla stazione non funzionano mai?

Bella domanda!  Da anni funzionavano a senso alternato: cioè se funzionava quella per scendere non funzionava quella per salire e vicersa. Ora molto democraticamente non funziona né l'una né l'altra. Anche se fino a poco tempo fa la mattina almeno ne funzionava una (quella per salire o quella per scendere) e il pomeriggio nessuna delle due, ora proprio son completamente morte.
Ma perché? Perché a Firenze le scale mobili della stazione non funzionano? Perché se si va a Milano, che ci sono scale  mobili chilometriche, funzionano e qui che sono di sì e no 5 metri non c'è modo alcuno di vederle in azione?
Di chi è la responsabilità?


Non lo sappiamo. L'unica cosa certa è che in una città che vive di turismo questa è l'ennesima immagine negativa della bassa qualità dei servizi che questa città offre.

ODEON Cinema in Florence APRIL&MAY PROGRAM

CINEMA ODEON-ENGLISH ORIGINAL SOUND in Florence



Cinema Odeon - Piazza Strozzi

Cinema Astra2 - Piazza Beccaria





APRILE/APRIL&MAGGIO/MAY:



April - Friday 29th & Saturday 30th ODEON

Rio di Carlos Saldanha (Usa/Can/Bra 2011, 96')

4.10 - 6.00

May - Sunday 1st

Rio di Carlos Saldanha (Usa/Can/Bra 2011, 96')

4.10 - 6.00 - 8.00 - 10.00 pm



Monday 2nd ODEON

Rango by Gore Verbinski (Usa 2011, 107')

4.15 - 6.15 pm

Tuesday 3rd

Rango by Gore Verbinski (Usa 2011, 107')

4.15 - 6.15 - 10.30 pm



Thursday 5th ODEON

World Invasion: Battle Los Angeles by Jonathan Liebesman (Usa 2011, 116')

4.10 - 6.20 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm



Saturday 7th ODEON - Europa Festival

Sound of Noise by Ola Simonsson & Johannes Stjärne Nilsson (Sweden 2010, 98')

9.30 pm - FREE ENTRY

with english and italian subtitles



Monday 9th ODEON - Europa Festival

Tilva Rosh by Nikola Lezaic (Serbia 2010, 99')

9.00 pm - FREE ENTRY

with english and italian subtitles



Tuesday 10th ODEON - Tuesday at the movies! by Palazzo Strozzi

Amadeus - Director's cut by Milos Forman (Usa 1984/2002, 178')

8.30 pm - FREE ENTRY

with italian subtitles



Thursday 12th ASTRA2

Limitless di Neil Burger (Usa 2011, 105')

5.15 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm

with italian subtitles



Monday 16th ASTRA2

Thor by Kenneth Branagh (Usa 2011, 130')

5.30 - 8.00 - 10.30 pm



From Wednesday 18th to Sunday 22nd ODEON

Pirates of the Caribbean: on stranger tides by (Usa 2011, 141')

italian subtitles to confirm (2D version)

4.00 - 6.40 - 9.30 pm

Monday 23rd - only 5.30 pm

Tuesday 24th - only 5.30 pm

Wednesday 25th - only 5.30 pm



Monday 23rd ODEON - Special event

Economics of Happiness by S. Gorelick, H. Norberg-Hodge, J. Page (Usa 2011, 67')

8.30 pm

with italian subtitles



Tuesday 24th ODEON - Tuesday at the movies! by Palazzo Strozzi

The Virtual Revolution - Ep. 3: The cost of free by Dan Kendall (GB 2010, 60')

8.30 pm - FREE ENTRY

with italian subtitles



Thursday 26th ASTRA2

Fast 5 by Justin Lin (Usa 2011)

5.15 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm

with italian subtitles



From Friday 27th to 29th ODEON

Tree of Life by Terrence Malick (India/GB 2011, 138')

4.00 - 6.40 - 9.30 pm

Monday 30th - only 5.30 pm

Tuesday 31st - only 5.30 pm

with italian subtitles



Tuesday 31st ODEON - Tuesday at the movies! by Palazzo Strozzi

The Virtual Revolution - Ep. 4: Homo interneticus di Molly Milton (GB 2010, 60')

8.30 pm - FREE ENTRY

with italian subtitles





GIUGNO/JUNE:



Monday 6th ODEON

Machete by Robert Rodriguez (Usa 2010, 105')

4.30 - 6.30 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm



Tuesday 7th ODEON - Tuesday at the movies! by Palazzo Strozzi

The Social Network by David Fincher (Usa 2010, 120')

8.30 pm - FREE ENTRY

with italian subtitles



Thursday 9th ASTRA2

The Hangover part II by Todd Philips (Usa 2011)

5.15 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm

italian subtitles to confirm



Monday 13th ODEON

X-Men: First-Class by Matthew Vaughn (Usa 2011)

6.00 - 8.30 - 10.30 pm

Tuesday 14th - only 6.00 - 10.30 pm

italian subtitles to confirm



Tuesday 14th ODEON - Tuesday at the movies! by Palazzo Strozzi

Rebel without a cause by Nicholas Ray (Usa 1955, 111')

8.30 pm - FREE ENTRY

with italian subtitles

venerdì 22 aprile 2011

STUDY ABROAD Nicholas Signoriello specials in Florence "LIBERATION DAY IN FLORENCE"


(via goticatoscana.eu)




STUDY ABROAD Nicholas Signoriello specials in Florence "LIBERATION DAY IN FLORENCE"

            For many Italians, April 25 marks one of Italy’s most important celebrations, Liberation Day. This is a day that commemorates the Partisans who freed Italy in World War II. This day is particularly moving because it represents the day Italy was liberated  
             from Nazi occupation and fascist armies.
            The Partisans were the Italians who fought alongside the Allied forces against the Nazi and Fascist occupation in Italy. In most cases, they were normally the first brigades to enter into battle ahead of the Allied Forces to symbolically show they were freeing their own country. What makes this day a particularly special one is it also marks the day Italians showed the world that not everyone was a Fascist supporter and that there was strong resistance to Mussolini’s regime. It also proved several tens of thousands of Italians were willing to fight for their freedom from Fascist rule and they did so paying a large price. Nearly 45,000 Partisans were killed by Nazi and Fascist forces.
            Logically, the Partisans who were willing to give their lives against the Fascist regime were in most cases, Communists. Therefore, although this day is celebrated throughout the entire peninsula, it is particularly special to the regions with left leaning sentiments, for example, here in Tuscany. If you were to go into the Tuscan country on this day, you would hear many people singing a famous Italian Folk song that commemorates the Partisans who fought for their freedom. The song is called, “Bella Ciao,” and it is a very emotional song to many Italians and ignites a sentimental feeling comparable to the way Americans feel when they listen to the song, “God Bless America,” although the contexts of the two are completely different.
            On Liberation Day, there are events, festivals, and sometimes even concerts across Italy from even the smallest town to the biggest city. It is a national holiday and many places will be closed throughout the country, although Florence is specifically touristy enough that most places will stay open even though there are no guarantees. Just by coincidence this year, Liberation Day happens to fall on the same day as Easter Monday, therefore, it will be a double celebration. Easter Monday is a day when many Italians travel out to the countryside for the day, so in my opinion, the countryside in Florence is going have many celebrations coming up on April 25. 

mercoledì 13 aprile 2011

Free Opera Concert: Donations given to Japanese Red Cross

Concert for charity to assist the earthquake victims in Japan

Thursday April 28th 2011, at 8:30pm
Dante Alighieri Society
Committee of Florence
Via Gino Capponi 4, Firenze


On March 11th, 2011 the strongest earthquake ever recorded in Japan shook the country, causing devastating loss and destruction. In hope that everything will return back to normal, we are launching this event with the intensions to help the Japanese people. The funds raised will be donated to the Japanese Red Cross.

Singers
Miyuki Endo
Atsuko Miyamoto
Kazue Yamaguchi

Pianist
Kayoko Ikeda

martedì 12 aprile 2011

STUDY ABROAD: What to do In Florence

Parco delle Cascine
by Nick Signoriello

So after a cold winter in Florence, it’s starting to get hot out and spring coming approaching quickly. For those of you who are wondering where the closest beach is, unfortunately I believe it is Viareggio which is no less than an hour and a half away by train. However, there is an alternative and its called Parco delle Cascine. It is Florence’s biggest park and it is where local Florentines gather when the weather begins to get nice.
The park is about a 20 minute walk from the Pone Vecchio and once you get to the entrance, its another 10 minute walk to the fields. These fields are enormous and on a nice day you’re surely to find local Italians, young and old alike, kicking a soccer ball, playing with their dogs, or just laying out on a towel taking in some sun. The park also has a great atmosphere and can be relaxing to get away from the city for a few hours. There are stands located throughout the park to grab a cheeseburger, porchetta sandwich, or a beer, and just hang out and relax.
If you don’t feel like walking, the park is also accessible by bus number 17. So if you want to get out of the city center for a few hours to relax and hang out with your friends, I highly suggest taking a trip to Parco delle Cascine. Also, on Tuesdays the park is home to a giant open market which is another filled with local Florentines from early morning until 2 PM. 

Florian: Special Discount for Istituto Europeo Students

A touch of Venice in the heart of Florence

The Florian cafe is offering a 10% special discount on Florian branded items to Istituto Europeo students.  Istituto Europeo students are given a break from their classes at 10:30am- 11am. To accommadate the students the Florian is offering breakfast during this time and lunch 12:30 to 2pm (which is when the students are released from class).  With the comfortable seating, no table charge, and just seconds from the school this boutique is going to become IE students new favorite place!

The tradition of quality of the Florian branded lines of products include GOURMET specialties, the refined LIFESTYLE collection and unique DESIGN items.

*TRY THE CHOCOLATE! YOUR TASTE BUDS WILL LOVE YOU FOR IT*
Via Del Parione 28/R
50123 FIRENZE , TOSCANA  


venerdì 8 aprile 2011

Mario Draghi, le marathonien de la finance



LE TEMPS


PORTRAIT Vendredi8 avril 2011

Mario Draghi, le marathonien de la finance

PAR MATHILDE FARINE




L’Italien fait figure de favori pour succéder à Trichet à la tête de la Banque centrale européenne. Portrait d’un banquier hyperactif défendu par le Suisse Jean-Pierre Roth
«Etre Italien, un défaut?» Jean-Pierre Roth, l’ancien président de la Banque nationale suisse, s’offusque que l’on puisse se servir de la nationalité de Mario Draghi comme d’un argument contre sa possible nomination à la tête de la Banque centrale européenne (BCE).
Car c’est un des rares arguments que ses détracteurs ont trouvé. Et ils s’en servent sans craindre de ressortir les clichés les plus usés. «A aucun prix cet Italien!» s’exclamait le Bild en février, alors qu’Axel Weber annonçait sa démission de la Bundesbank et, de fait, son retrait de la course à la succession deJean-Claude Trichet. «Chez les Italiens, l’inflation est à la vie ce que la sauce tomate est aux pâtes», rajoutait encore le quotidien populaire allemand. Même le plus sérieux Spiegel titrait dans son édition en ligne «Le superbanquier venu de Berlusconia».
L’Allemagne, en tête, grimace à l’idée de confier l’héritage de sa devise à un homme qui traîne la mauvaise réputation de son pays en matière de gestion budgétaire et d’inflation. Et, pour ne rien arranger, la vice-présidence de la BCE est assurée par Vitor Constancio, du Portugal, un autre pays en proie à des difficultés budgétaires.
Croire qu’ouvrir la présidence de la BCE à un économiste venu de Rome équivaudrait à laisser s’installer l’inflation serait mal connaître le personnage. Il est souvent présenté comme un «faucon», même modéré, un terme qui, dans le langage des banquiers centraux, est utilisé pour désigner quelqu’un qui ne plaisante pas avec l’inflation. Il est d’ailleurs très probable que Mario Draghi aurait affiché la même résolution à relever les taux d’intérêt que Jean-Claude Trichet ce jeudi.
Même Silvio Berlusconi – qui soutient son éventuelle candidature à la BCE – peut en témoigner pour avoir vu son gouvernement être remis à l’ordre par Mario Draghi. En Italie, certains pensent que c’est justement ces pressions continues sur le gouvernement qui font que le pays survive à la crise. Une rigueur qui, pour poursuivre sur les stéréotypes, a conduit plusieurs personnes à parler du Romain de 63 ans comme d’un «homme du Sud avec un tempérament du Nord».
«Il a une très grande intelligence, il est extrêmement modeste, réservé et ne s’amuse pas à se mettre en scène», considère Jean-Pierre Roth. L’ancien président de la BNS rencontre Mario Draghi pour la première fois dans les années 1970, alors que tous deux étudient au Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Les deux thésards se croisent alors que le Valaisan travaille sur des questions monétaires et le Romain fait partie des étudiants que mène Franco Modigliani. Ce dernier, un Italo-Américain, Prix Nobel une décennie plus tard, compte également dans sa volée d’étudiants des futurs grands noms de l’économie, comme Paul Krugman, nobélisé en 2008, et Olivier Blanchard, actuel chef économiste du Fonds monétaire international (FMI). Stanley Fischer, gouverneur de la Banque d’Israël,figure également parmi les conseillers de Mario Draghi pour son travail de doctorat.
Une fois son titre de docteur obtenu, Mario Draghi retourne en Italie, où il enseigne à l’Université de Florence. Puis il retraverse l’Atlantique pour entrer à la Banque mondiale. Le va-et-vient continue et, en 1991, il devient directeur général du Département italien du trésor. S’ouvre une période d’activité frénétique, qui lui aurait valu son surnom – c’était facile – de «Super Mario».
Pendant dix ans, l’économiste voit passer les ministres, mais lui reste pour participer à l’une des plus grandes vagues de privatisation jamais engagées en Europe. 10% du PIB italien avaient alors été privatisés, affirme-t-il. Il travaille également à l’établissement de la loi qui réglemente les marchés financiers du pays et à innover pour réduire drastiquement les coûts de financement du gouvernement.
Une expérience qui donne également un goût de déjà-vu à la crise de l’euro. L’Italien a aidé à mettre en place un plan d’austérité pour maîtriser un déficit inquiétant et une inflation galopante au début des années 1990, passage obligé pour s’intégrer dans la zone euro. Une expérience qui le persuade qu’avec «la bonne approche, concentrée sur une action audacieuse des gouvernements nationaux, la crise de l’euro est surmontable, malgré une intensité éblouissante», dit-il dans un entretien fin décembre avec le Financial Times. «Une situation alors bien pire que ce que l’on s’imagine dans les pays actuellement en difficulté», poursuit-il. Il rappelle que l’Italie s’était trouvée forcée d’émettre de la nouvelle dette ou de refinancer une dette jusqu’à l’équivalent de 60 milliards de dollars en un mois.
A cette période, «il jouait un rôle important en conduisant les travaux au niveau des sherpas dans les enceintes monétaires internationales», raconte Jean-Pierre Roth. Des réunions où le Suisse et l’Italien croisent également Jean-Claude Trichet, avant que celui-ci rejoigne la Banque de France. A l’arrière-plan figurera à la fin des années 1990 un assistant zélé et encore inconnu du grand public: Tim Geithner, aujourd’hui secrétaire d’Etat au Trésor américain. Pour Jean-Pierre Roth, c’est dans ces fonctions internationales que s’est révélé le talent de l’Italien à «amener ses interlocuteurs à dégager un consensus». Ce qui pourrait lui servir, alors que les dissensions au sein du conseil des gouverneurs de la BCE seraient grandissantes.
Puis apparaît dans son parcours ce que certains considèrent comme le point noir, un faux pas. A l’arrivée au pouvoir de Berlusconi, Mario Draghi prend une année sabbatique, puis se replonge dans le monde anglo-saxon. Il pénètre alors dans les arcanes de l’univers de la banque d’investissement. Et pas n’importe laquelle: il entre en 2002 à la direction de Goldman Sachs, considéré comme l’établissement bancaire le plus sulfureux, critiqué pour son attitude dans la crise des «subprime» et dans les montages financiers scabreux réalisés pour le gouvernement grec. Ce que certains considèrent comme un impair est cependant vu par d’autres comme une qualité: il ferait partie des rares responsables politiques à avoir une expérience directe dans une salle de marché. Difficile cependant de se faire une idée concrète de ses activités au sein de l’établissement new-yorkais.
Quatre ans plus tard, Rome le rappelle. La Banque d’Italie est en pleine déconvenue; son président, Antonio Fazzi, est empêtré dans un scandale et accusé de conflit d’intérêts. «Mario Draghi avait toutes les qualifications pour devenir banquier central: une expérience bancaire, un parcours qui mélange économie et finance, et un passage au Trésor italien», rappelle son ex-homologue suisse. Surtout, il avait la crédibilité nécessaire pour remettre l’institution sur la bonne voie.
De là, il prend également la tête dès 2006 de ce qui deviendra le Conseil de stabilité financière (FSB)en 2009. Un organisme mandaté par le G20 pour mettre de l’ordre dans la finance internationale qu’il conduit pendant toute la crise. «Beaucoup de progrès ont été faits sous la présidence de Mario Draghi», assurait de son côté Philipp Hildebrand, actuel président de la BNS, qui s’exprimait fin mars à Genève sur la réglementation bancaire.
Toujours discret, Mario Draghi devient tout à coup omniprésent. Il s’installe même au centre du monde. Lorsque le G20 se réunit, il fait partie des rares personnalités, avec les directeurs du FMI, de l’OCDE,du BIT et de l’OMC, à figurer aux côtés des chefs d’Etat. Ce qui n’est pas le cas de Jean-Claude Trichet ni celui de Ben Bernanke.
L’agenda du banquier central devient alors «infernal», concède Jean-Pierre Roth. Il doit concilier les obligations d’un gouverneur de la Banque d’Italie, celles d’un officiel de la BCE, en plus de son rôle au FSB. Un emploi du temps schizophrène qui lui aurait valu un autre surnom, celui de «Signor Altrove»(Monsieur Ailleurs). «Cela ne l’empêche pas de se concentrer pleinement sur ses tâches», défend son ancien homologue. Une multiplication des casquettes qui serait le signe d’une ambition démesurée? «Si, quand on est intelligent et compétent, on peut rendre service, c’est ce qui importe», tranche Jean-Pierre Roth.
Mario Draghi a le soutien des milieux d’affaires. The Economist et le Financial Times l’ont adoubé. Reste à convaincre les membres de la zone euro. Le résultat du marchandage entre Paris et Berlin a été balayé par le retrait inattendu d’Axel Weber. Pour le mieux, selon l’ancien patron de la BNS, car «Axel Weber n’a pas l’entregent, la capacité d’amener à un consensus, il est relativement carré et a toujours dépensé beaucoup d’énergie à convaincre le monde qu’il est Allemand!» Contrairement à Mario Draghi, qui «a la même sobriété et intelligence que Trichet, des qualités indispensables pour remplir cette fonction». A l’opposé des gesticulations et des frasques du premier ministre, Mario Draghi apparaît comme plutôt conformiste et très sérieux lors de la plupart de ses apparitions publiques. Sur sa vie privée, on saura seulement qu’il est marié, deux enfants. Rien de plus ne dépasse. Il laisse à peine échapper son goût pour la randonnée. Sans avoir pour l’heure annoncé sa volonté de prendre le relais du Français, il a fait des gestes en direction de l’Allemagne, la citant comme «modèle».
D’autres noms ont été cités pour remplacer l’actuel président, qui doit quitter ses fonctions en octobre. La nomination d’Yves Mersch, gouverneur de la Banque centrale du Luxembourg, est cependant «presque impossible» selon le ministre luxembourgeois des Finances, Luc Frieden. L’Allemand Klaus Regling, président du Fonds européen de stabilité financière, est de son côté desservi par son inexpérience en tant que banquier central. La Finlande a par ailleurs annoncé que le gouverneur de sa banque centrale, Erkki Liikanen, ne prendrait pas part à la course. S’il faut se fier à l’expérience passée, les cafouillages qui ont entouré la nomination du premier président de la BCE, Wim Duisenberg, supposé laisser sa place en cours de mandat à Jean-Claude Trichet, peuvent cependant laisser penser que des revirements peuvent encore se produire.



martedì 5 aprile 2011

STUDY ABROAD Nicholas Signoriello specials in Florence "Italian Caffè Culture"

STUDY ABROAD Nicholas Signoriello specials in Florence   "Italian Caffè Culture"


In my opinion, the caffè  is an integral part of the socialization of Italians. After living in Italy for at least a few weeks, you begin to notice that there are caffè bars on almost every street corner. Normally, they are filled with groups of Italians who for the most part stay loyal to a particular bar and know the barista on a personal basis.
Unlike in America, where it seems that many people in coffee shops keep to themselves and read the daily newspaper to stay up to date on current events, Italians choose to have debates instead and argue amongst each other about anything from soccer to immigration—or Berlusconi and his latest shenanigans.
For those of you who grab an espresso in any random bar you see on your way to class, I would suggest choosing a particular place to start going to continuously to truly experience this aspect of Italian life. It’s a great way to keep up to date on the current events that are happening in Italy without actually reading a newspaper. Once you become a familiar face, you can start offering your opinions also and engage in their conversations.
Another thing I have found to be convenient is that taking an espresso at a bar makes it easy to keep in touch with Italian friends you may not have time to see otherwise. If you have Italian friends that don’t go out to drink very often, you may not get a chance to hang out with them that much. My advice is to ask them to grab a caffè and have a chat.
It can be difficult for English speakers to keep up with current events in Italy on a daily basis, but taking a coffee at your local bar can introduce you to a whole world of Italian culture—especially if you start your morning with an espresso at the same bar where you can really get to know the faces (and opinions!) of the people that live and work here.



            

STUDY ABROAD Nicholas Signoriello specials in Florence "Il Museo del Calcio"

STUDY ABROAD Nicholas Signoriello specials in Florence
Il Museo del Calcio

by Nick Signoriello




For those of you who are soccer fans, specifically Azzurri fans, there is a great museum you need to see in Florence. Coverciano, a neighborhood in the northeast part of Florence, is home to the Italian national team’s training facility and historic museum.

If you happen to be in Florence for one of the weeks preceding a match for the Italian National team, I would suggest going to Coverciano to watch them practice and maybe even meet some of them. These are the stars thousands of people across the peninsula dream of meeting and we happen to have the great fortune of going to see them right in our backyard. Also, Coverciano is a relatively quiet part of Florence and the Museum isn’t usually too crowded. It gives you a chance to have a more personal experience when watching the team.

The Museum of Soccer outlines the entire history of the Azzurri. With rooms dedicated to the historical administration of the team, their World Cup participation, and even a special room dedicated to their most recent World Cup victory in 2006. The things that struck me most when I went into the first room were the uniforms and shoes the professionals wore in the early 1900s. The jerseys look a lot like thin Christmas sweaters and the cleats seem as if they would be impossible for someone in our time to run in, let alone kick a ball and dribble.

Also, the black and white pictures throughout the museum of the filled stadiums at the turn of the 20th century help you appreciate the long history of passion and love Italians have for soccer. Back then, before there were laws on how many people were allowed inside the stadium everyone crammed in like sardines. Things were certainly a lot different back then.


In Italy’s first ever International match, the Azzurri beat France 6-2 in Milan in 1910. At the end of the match, the 4,000 spectators threw packs of cigarettes on the field as a prize for all the players. In fact, some of the cigarette boxes belonging to the most famous players are still preserved in the museum with cigarettes that were never smoked.

As mentioned above, the Azzurri have a long and VERY successful history. Italy has won four World Cups—second only to Brazil with five victories. They won their first world title in 1934 and then again four years later in 1938. Italy chalked up another win in 1982 with stars like Dino Zoff, Paolo Rossi and Claudio Gentile, who famously shut down Diego Maradona in the final against Argentina. Italy then triumphed again recently in 2006 with an amazing showing from stars like Fabio Cannavaro, Francesco Totti, and Alessandro Del Piero. What I find extremely interesting about the last two World Cups is that both times Italy was facing major scandals regarding match fixing and betting scandals only months preceding the game, which created a shameful image of Italian soccer. However, both times they overcame and saved their reputation by winning the World Cup.

As you can tell, the history of the Italian National Team is one of the most respected in the world and in my opinion, also one of the most interesting. I feel fortunate that the Museum and training center that represents the national team is right here in our back yard in Florence. To get there, take bus 17 and exit at the last stop, Verga 01 or 02. It is only five Euro for admission and I highly suggest.

venerdì 1 aprile 2011

Study Italian Singing Techniques IN FLORENCE: Katherine Dick's Abroad Experience

Katherine Dick is a 20-year-old vocal performance major from Baker University in Kansas. She is currently studying abroad in Florence for four months and taking a total of five classes around the city. It has always been her dream to come to Italy because of the music technique and also because of her Italian heritage. Her classes for this semester include the following: Italian, cooking, Pompeii culture, and two music courses. ISTITUTO EUROPEO (a music, culture, language, art school) is where Katherine takes her two music classes, Singers Diction 1 and Vocal Coaching. Below is a brief interview detailing her experience so far.







“It has always been my dream to come to Italy”







Q1: Tell us about your program? How did you find it?
A1: I found FUA on my own and proposed it to my university for approval and made sure I could receive credit for the classes I am taking here. FUA representatives set up my schedule, and my classes are in different buildings all over Florence. For example I attend Istituto Europeo, but only for my music classes.

Q2: How was adjusting to the Italian culture?
A2: It was like climbing up and down a valley of emotions. When I first got here I was so excited and everything was great, but then the culture shock set in and I realized how much the language barrier impacted my mood. Then I got to know a few people and became comfortable with the city, but then I still felt hostility from the citizens here. Basically it was hard to adjust to the culture the first month, but all in all I feel like it would be that way in any country and the experience will be what I make it.

Q3: How are your music classes at ISTITUTO EUROPEO?
A3: In the beginning it was frustrating because it was hard to understand the techniques with the language barrier separating me from my professor, but after a few classes a light bulb just went off.  We managed to get past the fact I did not fully understand Italian, so in order to sing the lyrics correctly we practiced the pronunciation of words. Because of these classes I feel like I have experienced “vocal epiphanies” regularly instead of just once and a while. Training your voice takes time and patience, especially when it comes to opera and classical music. 



INTERVIEW DONE BY JUSTINE TRUSSO (An Intern at ISTITUTO EUROPEO)
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE MUSIC PROGRAM

email us at: info@istitutoeuropeo.it
Do you want to contact Katherine and ask her questions regarding her experience? Just ask us!

THE LAST ARTISAN IN FLORENCE: Simone Taddei (by Nick Signoriello)

Simone Taddei The Last Artisan in Florence
by Nick Signoriello

Not so long ago, Florence was a city full of master artisans. In 1966, the city experienced its worst flood since 1557, which destroyed millions of masterpieces throughout the city. The flood was so severe that the Ponte Vecchio could not be seen, it was completely under water. Along with the artistic masterpieces, many of Florence’s artisan shops were destroyed.
Being an artisan, someone who makes items by hand as opposed to items that are mass produced, is difficult work to say the least. It normally takes extensive years of practice to be considered a master craftsman. This is important to understanding why so many artisan shops couldn’t be saved after the flood. Although the city paid many of the artisan shop owners to restore their businesses, most of them took the money and opened different types of shops that required less manual labor and promised more economic certainty.
More than 40 years, after the flood, very few artisans have managed to survive . I had the opportunity to meet one of them. His name is Simone Taddei and he is an artisan that specializes in hand crafted leather goods. In Simone’s case, it took him 15 years to fully learn his trade while being an understudy to his father, the talented Giampaolo Taddei. In fact, leather has run in the Taddei family since 1907. His great grandfather, Giovanni Taddei, was a leather shoemaker. When Giovanni’s son (Simone’s grandfather) inherited the shoe shop, he was more interested in making fine leather goods, so, he opened a leather goods shop in 1937. Both Simone and his father followed in his grandfather’s footsteps and still make fine leather goods today.
Simone turned out to be quite a character. We talked about everything from the process of leather making to globalization. Unfortunately for Simone, they go hand in hand. As more products that Simone uses start becoming mass produced, the more limited he is when designing an item. Every leather box he makes on average takes between 32 and 40 steps, and between 20-50 days, varying for different sizes. In the 21st century. I consider this very strenuous work to only sell one item. Although Simone’s work is undoubtedly unmatchable by any mass production leather company, his trade has been greatly affected by globalization. He explained to me how the work he does can’t be appreciated by only a picture on a website. Simone would prefer to explain the process and hard work he puts into a particular picture frame or box, because a photo can’t do his work justice.
Globalization is also affecting his work on a production level. Until last December, he had a carpenter who would make the wooden frames for his products in quantities of eight. This allowed Simone to be flexible when someone wanted to order a customized shape leather box. When Simone lost his carpenter, he had to start doing business with a larger company who won’t give him any less than 20 frames of wood. This means that when someone wants a special sized customized frame, Simone will most likely have to say no because he doesn’t need 20 pieces of that one shape.
Even with these disadvantages, the quality of Simone’s work has allowed his business to survive. All the products he makes are 100% genuine leather, which is something only an artisan can produce. The wooden frame Simone uses to make his products, whether it is a box or picture frame, is eventually taken out at the end when the leather hardens.
As Simone himself would tell you, in order to truly appreciate his work, you have to go to his shop and see him. His shop is on Via San Margherita right across from Dante’s church; he is always willing to have a conversation with you and explain the steps and effort it takes to make one of his pieces. His leather boxes and picture frames are truly of the highest quality.