In this episode (which is part 1 of this series) of The Italian American Podcast, we talk with National Italian American Foundation President John Viola, and Anthony and Patrick O’Boyle. All three are members of the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George. We have a candid conversation with these passionate and active members of the Italian-American community about what is known as the Neo-Bourbon Movement and vital, shocking parts of Southern Italian history that have been buried.
In our Stories Segment, Dolores reads an excerpt from one of the books mentioned in our conversation, “Between Salt Water and Holy Water” by Tommaso Astarita.
“Let us reconstruct our historical memory – reconstruct our pride in being Southern Italian.”
- “Our culture is both changing and constant, but it’s not dying.” – Dolores Alfieri
- “Do your historical research and figure out why our ancestors left and what was lost.” – John Viola
- “Shame has been imposed on the South.” – John Viola on southern Italy
- “Southern Italian culture is its own and is worthy of respect, admiration, and pride.” – Dolores Alfieri
- “Italian Americans are not speaking wrong. They are speaking regionally and should be proud of it.” – John Viola on dialects
About our Guests…
John M. Viola was elected President of the National Italian American Foundation in March of 2013. With a career in community leadership and development, Viola is the co-founder of ELITE Learning of Brooklyn, a non-profit organization dedicated to the fundamental reform and improvement of inner-city education. The organization’s mission is to integrate educational programs and resources between schools and their local cultural institutions. While at ELITE Learning, Viola created numerous programs to foster the teaching of the Italian language to Italian American youth and others dedicated to service travel.
A graduate of Fordham University with a dual degree in Sociology and Anthropology, Viola has dedicated himself to developing international and domestic service programs inspired by the Jesuit mission to create “men and women for others” and to infuse a sense of social justice into all acts. He is a Knight of the Order of Merit of Savoy and serves as the United States Delegate for the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George, one of the oldest Chivalric Orders in the world. A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., he traces his ancestry to the Vallo di Diano in the province of Salerno, Puglia and Sicily.
Patrick O’Boyle is the Vice Chancellor of the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George.
Anthony O’Boyle is a Knight of the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George.
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|In the Shadow of Vesuvius
Anthony Fasano and Dolores Alfieri
Co-Hosts, The Italian American Podcast