La Fisarmonica

Relationship: Im/migrant
My grandfather's accordian
My grandfather's accordian

The object I chose to represent my family’s cultural identity is my grandfather’s Italian flag accordion.  I am a first generation Italian American.  My parents immigrated to the U.S. in the early 1970’s bringing bare bones necessities with them on their journey.  I imagine that my grandfather would have left his clothes behind before he left his accordion in Italy.  Traditional accordion music is an essential part of culture in Southern Italy where my family is from.  Bringing his accordion to the U.S. ensured that my grandfather would preserve that part of our Italian heritage.  When I think of my grandfather’s accordion it conjures up memories of light heartedness, happiness, and dancing to countless tarantellas.  Without fail, my grandfather would always bring his “fisarmonica” to family events and we would all gather around him, dance and laugh until it hurt.  Now that my grandfather is gone, hearing accordion music immediately brings me back to Italy, my family’s journey to America and my cultural identity. 

Place(s): Coreno Ausonio, Italy

– Marie

Relationship:  Im/migrant Im/migrant