Italian American Baseball Family Documentary Screening at the ICCC Featured in the Local Press
Let us take you out to an Italian baseball game! We are excited to announce that our Italian American Baseball Family event was featured in the Houston Press.
Roberto Photo by Peter McEvilley.
Grazie mille to Bob Ruggiero at Houston Press for the special feature on our upcoming event, Italian American Baseball Family.
Confirmed panelists for the event are former Team Italy hurler and Cincinnati Reds pitcher A.J. Morris, David Fanucchi (Author of Miracle on Grass: How Hall of Famer Tommy Lasorda led Team USA to a shocking upset over Cuba, capturing the only Olympic gold medal in USA baseball history), SportsRadio 610 host Shaun Bijani, Ray Gambino (baseball infielder for the Federazione Italiana Baseball Softball in Italy between 1986 – 1990), and Astros broadcaster Francisco Romero.
To buy your ticket, you can go to Eventbrite or call the office at 713-524-4222 ext.7.
Italian American Baseball Family tells the story of the Italian Americans’ role in baseball and in the culture of American sports. The movie documents an ethnic group’s rise from adversity and celebrates its triumphs in breaking into a game that was originally dominated by English, Irish and German immigrants. While some immigrants chose to change their names to mask their Italian identity, most felt the need to preserve and hold on to familiar things such as language, customs, and beliefs as a way of tolerating the discriminatory practices and injustices they encountered in America.
Children of immigrants felt stuck in the middle between protective parents who did not want the foreign ways of America to affect the close-knit Italian family, and their own desire to blend into the culture in which they were born. These children lived dual identities, conflicted by the rich Italian traditions of their parents inside their homes and the outside world which existed in the streets and in the schools, where they were taught to become American.
The solution to the stigma of being labeled as outsiders was to discover a way to become less different by assimilating into American culture. As a staple of mainstream American life, baseball presented Italians a viable point of entry as players and fans. By instilling the values of fair play, opportunity and democracy, baseball taught the children of immigrants how to become American.
This program was made possible in part with a grant from Humanities Texas, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.