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Emigrants and Mestizos in Twenty-first Century Europe

  • Armando Gnisci (a1)

Abstract

By the end of this century the majority of the European population will consist of ‘mestizos’. The majority of western intellectuals and politicians are still unprepared for this imminent change that will introduce a new Europe shaped by immigrants and mestizos. This essay seeks to reflect upon the possible implications in building a new twenty-first century Europe by approaching the issue through a historical and theoretical lens. I conclude by reflecting on the coming of millions of immigrants to Europe. This new quasi-European group is creating the melting pot of the twenty-first century, which I see as a eutopic project. Eutopia involves the idea of a just place where we can all live well together, and it offers us hope and a viable way to approach the impending European Transculturation. Overall, this article considers the phenomenon of European immigration in a constructive way, because immigrants and mestizos offer us the important possibility of a Europe decolonized from ourselves and together with them.

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(English translation by NICOLINO APPLAUSO)

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1.Gazzoni is the translator and editor of Kamau Brathwaite’s poetry collection Diritti di passaggio (Rome: Edizioni Ensemble, 2014), p. 216. His latest book, Pensiero caraibico, is forthcoming by Edizioni Ensemble.
2.Translator’s note: Armando Gnisci uses the terms ‘eutopico’ and ‘eutopia’ in the original Italian text. He explains this neologism as the concept of a place of ideal well-being that, unlike utopia, could be practically achieved. I would like to thank Theo D’haen and Leslie Zarker Morgan for their valuable and helpful suggestions on my English translations. Any remaining errors are mine.
3.In 1953, the Italian film director Pietro Germi co-wrote and directed a movie with this title (Il cammino della speranza) based on the topic of the Italian emigration in France, which involved Italians crossing the Alps.
4.It is still inconceivable today to observe the world map and discover the brutal effects of the colonialism of Russia upon Siberia, in that part of the world that Russians now call Russia.
5.Translator’s note: The term ‘po-ethics’ is here translated from the Italian ‘po-etica’ which includes an untranslatable double entendre because the expressions combines both the term ‘poetics’ and ‘ethics’, which in Italian are spelled very similarly, thus suggesting that the author’s personal convictions are strongly expressed through his literary style.
6.See my booklet Ascesi e decolonizzazione (Lithos, Roma, 1996).
7.This is the title of my 2013 book, Via della Transculturazione e della Gentilezza, published in Rome by Edizioni Ensemble.

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