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Thursday, February 16, 2017 - 9:30am

Mercy College Associate Professor of Secondary Education Eric Martone recently wrote entries in, and edited, a reference book on the history and culture of Italian Americans. Martone began work on the project in 2014 and he was supported by a Mercy College Faculty Development grant.


Eighteen Mercy College graduate students and alumni contributed to the book. For many of them, this is their first scholarly publication.


“Writing for historical reference works was one of the first types of publications I had when I was starting out as an academic and I sought to use my more established academic standing to help support the development of future teacher-scholars. I am extremely proud of the work my Mercy education students and alumni have done for this publication” said Martone.


The book, “Italian Americans: The History and Culture of a People”, is divided into five sections that relate the entire saga of the Italian-American experience from America’s earliest days to the present. The book highlights the enormous contributions Italian Americans—the fourth largest European ethnic group in the United States—have made to the professions, politics, the academy, the arts and the popular culture of America in a historical context, and highlights the multitude of ways in which Italian Americans have influenced U.S. history and culture.


Mercy College is also featured in the book. The entry in the book on "Verrazzano College" focuses on the Verrazzano Institute at Mercy. The Institute was originally formed as an independent institution and then re-launched as a semi-autonomous institute at the College. It examines the Institute within the context of the rise of ethnic studies and the growth of Italian American studies in particular as a field of research at several colleges and universities during the 1960s and 1970s and highlights Mercy's role and contribution to these developments at the time.


The book also features a collection of key primary source documents, ranging from a 1493 letter from Christopher Columbus announcing his discovery, to excerpts from President Barack Obama's 2011 speech to the National Italian American Foundation. 


“Italian Americans: The History and Culture of a People” is available in print and as an e-copy, and as part of ABC-CLIO’s historical databases targeted primarily for school, college, and public libraries.


About Mercy College

Mercy College is the dynamic, diverse New York City area college whose students are on a personal mission: to get the most out of life by getting the most out of their education.

Founded in 1950, Mercy offers more than 90 undergraduate and graduate degree and certificate programs within five schools: Business, Education, Health and Natural Sciences, Liberal Arts and Social and Behavioral Sciences. Mercy College challenges its faculty and staff to make higher education work for anyone hungry enough to earn a better place in life.  With campuses in Dobbs Ferry, Bronx, Manhattan and Yorktown Heights, the vibrancy of the College culture is sustained by a diverse student body from around the region. Committed to supporting students throughout their education, Mercy College offers a personalized learning experience that includes the College’s Personalized Achievement Contract (PACT) program. PACT is a nationally recognized mentoring program that serves as a model for student success. 877-MERCY-GO.



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