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Thread: The culture in Italy

  1. #1
    Jimmy
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    The culture in Italy

    I have an assigment in school to compare Italy and Sweden when it comes to culture. I think I have what it takes when it comes to sports. But what I do lack is the social cultures in Italy. Can anyone from there tell me some of it?

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    In brief:
    - family-centered, every generations of the family is taken care of
    - children live long with their parents especially in big cities (due to expensive living), there are loads of mammone's (mama's boys, over thirty, living home)
    - religious, catholic church is almost as powerful as calcio
    - strong bipartition between rich north and poor south
    - Sicily and Sardinia differ a lot from the peninsula
    - mafia is still strong especially in Sicily and southern Italy
    - weak national spirit due to historical reasons (this too especially in the south), the regions were forced to belong to Italy's kingdom

    I hope this helps a bit.
    Maybe our Italian members will correct me later on.
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    - It's almost impossible to consider Italy as a whole, since the differences between North, centre and south are absolutely huge.

    - Church in Italy is not powerful anymore. Only for old people. When a teenager is told not to use a condom what do you think he does? Laughs his ass off and wonders what he's doing losing time with church...

    - family-centered, every generations of the family is taken care of
    Jake made a great point here. In Italy you can't get a job without a University degree, so you live with your parents until you're 26 and over. Young people are very spoiled.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frisko
    - Church in Italy is not powerful anymore. Only for old people. When a teenager is told not to use a condom what do you think he does? Laughs his ass off and wonders what he's doing losing time with church...
    This is a generalization that you shouldn't make. Jimmy is writing a report for class, so you shouldn't have your bias towards religion in Italy as a precursor for your answer - the Catholic church in Italy should still be powerful in some ways, after all, the seat of the church lies in Rome. Sure, the ability of the church to govern daily matters has definitely eroded, as has religion in most people's consciousness worldwide, but that shouldn't be any suggestive reason for a religion's governing body to have lost all power (or credidibility, hence) as you have mentioned.

    You cannot use your subject about the use of condoms as a definite reason to denote the church's waning power. You are only using the points that suit your argument best. There is no doubt that a majority of people would shrug off suggestions of using a condom as a prevention for sex in religious terms. However, like i have mentioned before, this is a gross general misconception you have painted. Unless consensus has been made on every single Italian Catholic, you cannot lay claim to any fact that people's faith in religion has eroded so completely that the church no longer has any influence over people's lives. Until the day that the aforementioned influence is completely gone, then one cannot say that the Roman Catholic church is no longer powerful.

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    Well Tim, the position on condoms was merely one example.

    I lived in Italy for 22 year. I was raised Catholic and I've been going to church regualry for many years.

    I can tell you that the influence that the Church had on people changed dramatically during the last generation. My parents, and people of similar age, lived in a world where no one would have dared saying out loud that the position of the Church was wrong.

    I think many aspects are making the Church in Italy less and less important. Some of their ideas are so out of reality nowadays. I mentioned their position on sex as an example.

    To me, the figure of the Pope had a terrible influence too. You see this poor old man and wish he could enjoy his last years in peace, yet again "tradition" wants him to be Pope for life. It doesn't matter if the man can't keep a little dignity.

    There's more gold in Italy's churches than in Italy boutiques. Why? What's the need for that?

    From my personal experience, the catholic church is on his way to the grave. Times are changing, and young people just don't care anymore.

    That's the way it is.
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    I found this exchange interesting so i will post what i think about the theme.

    Religious adherence is wining down in many countries, not just Italy. The new generation and their 'free' and totally 'liberal' attitude towards life conflicts with religion so they abandon it.

    This is a grave issue IMO. Year after year you see moral and ethical values deteriorating all over the world. Now you have increasing drug abuse, rise in teen pregnancy, family values vanishing etc. This is mainly due to the lack of religious influence in people lives.

    Religion is more than a practice or set of physical activities. The mental and psychological values are even more important. There are many things that come with religion like self-discipline, priority to ethical and moral values etc. Of Course there are those who attain these things without religion, but far more attain it with religion.

    You could argue that more harm than good has been done by religion. But remember that wars and negative practises are started by people who hide behind religion to further their own cause. Unfortuantely, most people and media jump to critique religion in every chance they have.

    I am not totally familiar with italian culture but I know alot about it. The 'familia' phenomenon is center in italy more than any other western country. Religion plays a major role in that, and always family values and teachings influence a child's character more than anything else.

    If you study most criminlas and depressed peoples' cases you could trace their problems to family issues (lack of father, divorced parents etc.) There is alot that comes with religion other than orders and obligations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hamed
    Now you have increasing drug abuse, rise in teen pregnancy, family values vanishing etc. This is mainly due to the lack of religious influence in people lives.
    Quote Originally Posted by Hamed
    You could argue that more harm than good has been done by religion. But remember that wars and negative practises are started by people who hide behind religion to further their own cause. Unfortuantely, most people and media jump to critique religion in every chance they have.
    I totally disagree with this. The changes in our society cannot be explained by lack of religious beliefs, sadly it's simply the way things are evolving.

    I also think that there are surely people who use religion as something to hide behind while pursuing other purposes; but there are many, many people who are ready to do everything for their religious beliefs, including killing innocent people. And many do that.

    About Italy, your analysis is quite accurate, but only if you consider the south of Italy.

    The north of Italy, from Milan to Florence, is very European. It's a modern society, with all his good points and letdowns.

    The south of Italy is much more traditional. The importance of the family is much more evident there.
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  8. #8
    Jimmy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hamed
    This is a grave issue IMO. Year after year you see moral and ethical values deteriorating all over the world. Now you have increasing drug abuse, rise in teen pregnancy, family values vanishing etc. This is mainly due to the lack of religious influence in people lives.
    That would mean that Sweden should be the biggest country when it comes to doing drugs and the other mumbo jumbo that you added. Since in Sweden about 95% of the people are not religious whatsoever. But we all know thatīs not true.

    If people do all these things, itīs due to their own damn stupidity. Not due to lack of religious influence. It could be lack of social influence.

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    Sweden is a different case. I know many people that live there and life's standard are pretty good when you compare it to other countries. I mentioned religion as a primary factor but there are many others including social influence.

    When there is no or little poverty, people seem to act differently. There is less crime, and almost everyone has a job to keep him/her busy and satisfied with life.

    But there are other problems that arise from such situations, like increase in depression and suicide rate. I don't know about Sweden in particular, but scandinavian countries like Finalnad and Iceland have high suicide rate when compared to other world countries.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Hamed
    Finalnad and Iceland have high suicide rate when compared to other world countries.
    And Sweden too.
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  11. #11
    Jimmy
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    And thatīs due to our own damn stupitity as well, and not due to lack of religion or some other crap.

    My religion is "individualism". It means that each person are responsible for their own actions.

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    I have always wanted to know more of italy's culture. I hope there are some guys who can tell us more about it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy
    And thatīs due to our own damn stupitity as well, and not due to lack of religion or some other crap.
    It would be less if there was a religion offering alternatives for this tragic solution or banning it outright.

    My religion is "individualism". It means that each person are responsible for their own actions.
    The bad thing about that is that humans don't have the total knowledge to create their own religion. But it's a faith thing at the end of the day.

  14. #14
    Jimmy
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    Yeah yeah... Whatever you say.

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    Being from the South of Italy I can say that there is a lot of prejudice with the South and the North unfortunately.For example Calabria is said to be the poorest region in the country - however I have found that there is a more traditional feel in Calabria (and parts of Sicily too) than in cities such as Milan and Rome.Whether it's because the South is more slow paced,relaxed and old style than the North I don't know but there is a difference...

    The Mafia I can say with 100% certainty is still around - it's just not so noticeable anymore.But the amount of Mafioso's you see if you really look out is amazing,and the power that they have too!

    If you have anymore questions - just ask!

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  16. #16
    Jimmy
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    Okay guys. This project is going straight to hell, because I have basically no material whatsoever. I need help!!!!!

    So Iīll just add some points and some nice soul that is from Italy can tell me about it:

    • How it is to be a woman in Italy
    • School
    • Suburbs
    • North and South
    • The islands culture
    • Big city culture
    • Music
    • TV
    • Dialects
    • Racism



    If thereīs anything other that needs to be added, feel free. Iīm supposed to talk 15 minutes about this shit, so I better get some help!

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    [*] How it is to be a woman in Italy

    In Italy business hours are 9-12 and 3-7, when in Englad the business day is 9-5.

    It's easy to see how much harder is for an Italian woman to have a career and a family.

    I got to say that in the South women are treated kinda like objects (no offense to southerns but it's true). Especially in Sicily, they can't even look a man in the face or they're in big trouble
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  18. #18
    Jimmy
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    I have two hours to go and still no material. Thanks a bunch! :p

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hamed
    Religious adherence is wining down in many countries, not just Italy. The new generation and their 'free' and totally 'liberal' attitude towards life conflicts with religion so they abandon it.

    This is a grave issue IMO.
    More like a grave success!

    Year after year you see moral and ethical values deteriorating all over the world.
    I agree on the moral part and this is truly sad. But how you manage to blame this on lack of religion is beyond my imagination. But never mind...

    Now you have increasing drug abuse, rise in teen pregnancy, family values vanishing etc. This is mainly due to the lack of religious influence in people lives.
    Did you ever consider the possibility that perhaps it could be because of your before mentioned deteriation of morals and ethics?? <snip>

    Unfortuantely, most people and media jump to critique religion in every chance they have.
    Aaargh... Thatīs because there is so bloody much to criticize!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy
    That would mean that Sweden should be the biggest country when it comes to doing drugs and the other mumbo jumbo that you added. Since in Sweden about 95% of the people are not religious whatsoever. But we all know thatīs not true.

    If people do all these things, itīs due to their own damn stupidity. Not due to lack of religious influence. It could be lack of social influence.
    Very well said.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hamed
    But there are other problems that arise from such situations, like increase in depression and suicide rate. I don't know about Sweden in particular, but scandinavian countries like Finalnad and Iceland have high suicide rate when compared to other world countries.
    Iceland is not Scandinavian.

    It would be less if there was a religion offering alternatives for this tragic solution or banning it outright.
    Not saying it would, but how do you know it wouldnīt just make it worse?
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