LUISA DEL GIUDICE was born in Terracina (Latina, Italy), emigrated to Toronto, Canada in 1956, and has lived in Los Angeles since 1981. She has been both a university academic (University of California, San Diego and Los Angeles) and public sector educator (as the Founder-Director of the nonprofit, Italian Oral History Institute, in Los Angeles, 2000-2007). In her multiple activities as academic, public folklorist, and community activist, she seeks to bridge various roles and audiences. She is committed to community education and to creating innovative public programs on the folk and regional cultures of Italians and Italian immigrants. She has published and lectured widely and is internationally known for her work on Italian and Italian American and Canadian folklife, ethnology, and oral history: from foodways (e.g., gastronomic utopias, wine culture and the cantina, history of pasta, food altars), material culture and belief (Toronto’s archvillas, Watts Towers, St. Joseph’s Day Tables,), to oral expressions, especially song (ballads, neo-tarantismo, folk revival movements), to children’s literature (Tomie de Paola), and oral history (Archeology and Horace’s Villa in Licenza, Italian Los Angeles). She has produced many public events on Italian and Mediterranean regional and folk culture in Los Angeles, California and internationally, and is committed to cross-cultural dialogue. She also devotes her energies to social issues through interfaith peace and justice work.
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