Precarious Landscapes: Space, Identity, And Community In Migrant Italy
In this dissertation, I map the ways that intersecting historical, literary, cinematic, and media narratives produce spaces commonly associated with Italy's minority populations. My analysis of these spaces-squats, encampments, detention centers, urban peripheries, and coastal waters-uncovers the conflicting strategies of Italian identity production that have emerged in response to new migrations, and further examines the ways that migrants living in Italy articulate their own identities. I argue that popular narratives produce distinct migrant spaces by emphasizing alterity and framing precariousness as an essentially foreign phenomenon. Consequently, these spaces are seen as a threat to Italian national unity and continuity: zones of foreign precariousness encroaching on the stability of Italian communities. I look beyond mainstream constructions of migrant spaces, and examine narratives from Italy's thriving minor literature and cinema. In these works, migrant authors and directors explore the potentiality of living precariously, constructing spaces hospitable to fragmented and overlapping identities. Ultimately, I argue that these works provide us with alternative ways of considering space, identity, and community, allowing diverse subjects to navigate the shifting landscape of a global age.
contemporary Italy; migration and diaspora; minor literature and cinema
Lasansky,Diana Medina; Pinkus,Karen Elyse
Ph. D., Romance Studies
Doctor of Philosophy
dissertation or thesis