Italian Immigrants Holiday Traditions

1262 Words5 Pages
Americans have become so accustomed to holiday traditions today that the meaning of how they arrived here has been lost. Immigrants of Italy brought to America their family-centered culture of celebrating these holidays. Their culture was so influencing that villages for the Italians were actually formed. The Italians celebrated numerous holidays in Italy; most celebrations included their fine foods and wine. Although, after the immigrants arrived in America they no longer observed many of the holidays that they did in Italy.

The Italians’ holiday culture helped to make America a more diverse nation. Their family-centered culture and regional affiliations resulted in highly concentrated settlements called, Little Italies. Entire villages in Italy would travel over to America to form these settlements. Many were heavily clustered in cities in the mid-atlantic and midwest states. The immigrants typically viewed themselves as residents of a particular region or village, not as “Italians.” Their daily habits and life reflected this, as they usually only associated with fellow kin or villagers called paesani. The Italians were working on becoming a member of American society while still trying to maintain their old customs. During holidays, Italian immigrants still utilized traditional customs such as folk songs, folklore, and dances for special events. However, like so many of the Italian aspects of life, they were so regionally specific that they defied easy characterization.
Get Access