Revised Call for Papers: Edited Volume/Transcultural Encounters: Italian Americans and Greek Americans

deadline for submissions: 
October 15, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Editors: Yiorgos Anagnostou, Yiorgos Kalogeras, Theodora Patrona
contact email: 

Transcultural Encounters: Italian Americans and Greek Americans

Italian Americans and Greek Americans have lived in the same neighborhoods, worked in the same workplaces, loved each other, married with each other, and participated in labor strikes together. Did they play music together? Did they find inspiration in each other’s cultural expressions? What do we know about the field of their interactions? They have certainly been classified under the same rubric as “white ethnics,” Michael Novak’s infamous PIGS (Poles, Italians, Greeks and Slavs), an ideological construction which was pivotal in the identity politics of the 1970s. But how did Italian American and Greek American lives intersect in everyday social life? How did they negotiate their mobility to the suburbs in relation to each other? In what ways did Italian American and Greek American histories and experiences diverge?

The transcultural encounters between Italian Americans and Greek Americans have been marginalized in academic research, where the “single group approach” privileges the study of ethnic singularity instead of cross-cultural intersections. Literature, literary criticism, and labor studies certainly acknowledge and explore Italian–Greek American cross-fertilizations. But this transcultural field requires that we place it at the center of analysis to bring scholarship closer to social realities.

This volume brings into focus Italian American and Greek American encounters from the perspective of anthropology, folklore, history, language, literature, and cultural studies, including film, ethnomusicology, and biography. Taking cues from concepts such as “contact zones” and borderlands, we are interested in understanding the social dynamic–processes involving negotiation, conflict, cooperation, solidarity, love, cultural exchanges–that have marked these encounters. We are interested in identifying differences, similarities, and intersections across the historical experiences of these groups. We wish to map specific encounters and find out what these encounters tell us about European American transculturalism in the United States.

In addition to cross-cultural encounters, we are also interested in contributions comparing Italian American and Greek American cultural expressions, festivals and architecture for instance, as well as institutions, language schools, university programs in language and cultural studies, and others. We ask that in addition to comparing particular expressions and institutions, contributors reflect on the practices of comparison they have employed. How do the authors understand comparison? What comparative approach was chosen for a specific case study and why?     

We are looking for papers which are theoretically informed and ethnohistorically grounded. They must engage with key theoretical concepts associated with transcultural encounters and comparison, and must be written in a compelling and accessible prose. Length should not exceed 6,000 words, including bibliography.

All submissions will undergo peer review.

Topics could include the following:

• Workplace; working class solidarities and tensions

• Multiple identities

• Family, gender, sexuality

• Religion and Folklore (intersection of mythological themes for example)

• Resistance to or consent to whiteness 

• Immigrant and ethnic neighborhoods

The immigrant and ethnic past: memory, family biography, autobiography

• Cultural cross-fertilizations; music, theater, cinema


Please send a well-developed, 350-500 word abstract, and a curriculum vitae to Theodora Patrona ( by October 15, 2018. The abstract must outline the author’s theoretical framework and identify the aims of the work. It must include relevant bibliography.

Formal invitation to contribute to the volume by November 15, 2018

Deadline for the submission of the book chapter, May 1, 2019

Projected date of publication Fall 2019

Yiorgos Anagnostou, Yiorgos Kalogeras, Theodora Patrona