Food, Language and Tango: Embodiment of Italian Transnationalism in Argentina

By: Hillary Lindsay '13

Advising Faculty: Jeffrey Cole

We live in a dynamic world of constant movement and interaction. Due to such dynamics, both people and their nationalities are mobile, resulting in the creation of transnationalism. Transnationalism is the concept that national identities extend beyond borders. This concept is illustrated by the Italians in the aftermath of their mass migration during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries around the world, especially to North and South America. The particular focus of this honors thesis is on Italian transnationalism in Argentina. My research was completed in Italy, Argentina, and the United States beginning in 2010. In Buenos Aires during the summer of 2012, I conducted fieldwork using an anthropological framework and experimental methods of ethnography, placing the self within the research. I examine the history, trends, and patterns of migration, and how the transnationalist experience of the Italian immigrants in Argentina became embodied in food, language, and tango. I use historical narrative, firsthand accounts and personal experience to discover the cultural realities of transnationalism and the human experience of immigration.

Related Fields: Anthropology, Dance, Italian Studies