The Humble and the Heroic: Wartime Italian Americans

by Salvatore LaGumina


The Humble and the Heroic: Wartime Italian Americans asks two basic questions: Was an extra measure of loyalty and patriotism required of Italian immigrants because the country of their birth was a declared enemy of their adopted country; and, does their WW II experience offer meaningful insights as to how we should treat other immigrant groups in future conflicts?

While the answer to both questions is in the affirmative, the long, arduous, road traveled by the ethnic group has not received the attention it deserves. Their quest for acceptance amidst a path paved with sacrifice, bitter poverty, discrimination, and, for many, the devastating indignity of being designated as “enemy aliens,” is worthy of scholarly study.


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