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December 15, 2007

Comments

Michael David Todaro

In his December 13th article, “In a Funk, Italy Sings an Aria of Disappointment” Ian Fisher quotes Rome’s mayor Walter Veltroni as saying that Italy is “…a country that has lost a little of its will for the future.”

I believe the mayor could have expressed his sentiments in more precise terms.

I do not believe that Italy has lost its will for the future, nor do I believe that Italy has lost its will at all. However, I do believe that Italy may have temporarily misplaced it. I suspect that, like a prize fighter, Italy has taken a few more blows to the head in the past few years than would be considered “within comfortable limits” and is feeling the effects of fatigue. I also believe that this feeling will not endure.

Italy has had a long tradition of being the “come-back kid.” Over the centuries the peninsula and surrounding islands have been conquered, liberated, conquered again and united. Since the early days of the Roman Empire, Italy has seen economic depressions and great losses, but these adversities–both periodic and finite–have resulted in a country that is both proud and strong, rich in history and culture.

I also applaud and at the same time, chastise Ian Fisher for the preciseness of his article’s title. There is a reason why Italy sings both arias of joy and despair: because it can. Because it created the medium in the first place. Ian Fisher chose his metaphor with precision but perhaps his intent might be aided with a somewhat more substantive definition of what an aria really is:

An aria is but a short song sung by a single voice. It is a small part of a much larger and greater operatic work that only reflects the individual character’s emotional state. It does not, however, represent the entire opera, nor does it necessarily portray the emotions of “all” of the characters in the opera itself.

For the opera to work, other voices need to sing, and other songs need to be sung.

I cannot say who the “individual” was who sang this particular aria, but I do not believe it is at all accurate to call the character “Italy.” Italy sings with more than just one voice, so it could not have possibly sung the aria that Ian Fisher describes. This aria, then, more accurately represents a single individual or entity, and the opera in which it is contained may tell an altogether different story.

I doubt that the entire opera has even been written yet.

I would surmise, therefore, that this oeuvre is far from over.

Michael David Todaro

Michael David Todaro

In his December 13th article, “In a Funk, Italy Sings an Aria of Disappointment” Ian Fisher quotes Rome’s mayor Walter Veltroni as saying that Italy is “…a country that has lost a little of its will for the future.”

I believe the mayor could have expressed his sentiments in more precise terms.

I do not believe that Italy has lost its will for the future, nor do I believe that Italy has lost its will at all. However, I do believe that Italy may have temporarily misplaced it. I suspect that, like a prize fighter, Italy has taken a few more blows to the head in the past few years than would be considered “within comfortable limits” and is feeling the effects of fatigue. I also believe that this feeling will not endure.

Italy has had a long tradition of being the “come-back kid.” Over the centuries the peninsula and surrounding islands have been conquered, liberated, conquered again and united. Since the early days of the Roman Empire, Italy has seen economic depressions and great losses, but these adversities–both periodic and finite–have resulted in a country that is both proud and strong, rich in history and culture.

I also applaud and at the same time, chastise Ian Fisher for the preciseness of his article’s title. There is a reason why Italy sings both arias of joy and despair: because it can. Because it created the medium in the first place. Ian Fisher chose his metaphor with precision but perhaps his intent might be aided with a somewhat more substantive definition of what an aria really is:

An aria is but a short song sung by a single voice. It is a small part of a much larger and greater operatic work that only reflects the individual character’s emotional state. It does not, however, represent the entire opera, nor does it necessarily portray the emotions of “all” of the characters in the opera itself.

For the opera to work, other voices need to sing, and other songs need to be sung.

I cannot say who the “individual” was who sang this particular aria, but I do not believe it is at all accurate to call the character “Italy.” Italy sings with more than just one voice, so it could not have possibly sung the aria that Ian Fisher describes. This aria, then, more accurately represents a single individual or entity, and the opera in which it is contained may tell an altogether different story.

I doubt that the entire opera has even been written yet.

I would surmise, therefore, that this oeuvre is far from over.

Michael David Todaro

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