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Language of my Choosing

Language of my Choosing

The candid life-memoir of an Italian Scot

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Where do I truly belong? This is the question Anne Pia continually asked of herself growing up in the Italian-Scots community of post-World War Two Edinburgh.

This candid, vibrant memoir shares her struggle to bridge the gap between a traditional immigrant way of life and attaining her goal of becoming an independent-minded professional woman.

Title Language of my Choosing
Subtitle The candid life-memoir of an Italian Scot
Author Anne Pia
ISBN 9781910745915
eISBN 9781910324943
Binding Hardback
Author Bio

Anne Pia is based in Edinburgh. Born in the city, as the grandchild of Italian immigrants she was raised surrounded by the food, traditions and dialect of southern Italy. Her Italian grandmother was a major influence, whose sense of style, love of food and wise views of life Anne has passed on to her daughters – Camilla, Roberta and Sophie-Louise.

A language graduate and former teacher with a recent Doctorate in Education (2008), Anne has been published in the Times Educational Supplement, the Scottish Educational Review and in various other professional and academic journals. As a government official and HM Inspector, she has been responsible for national reports for a range of stakeholders on education in the adult learning world.

Her poetry has been published in Northwords Now, Poetry Scotland, New Voices Press, Lunar Poetry, The Fat Damsel and South Bank Poetry, and online in Far Off Places, Poet and Geek and Ink, Sweat & Tears. ‘Viticuso 1913 and 2005’ has been translated into Italian. She plays the mandolin in the Edinburgh Mandolin and Guitar Orchestra and has played at poetry festivals around Scotland.

Back Cover Text

Where do I truly belong? This is the question Anne Pia continually asked of herself growing up in the Italian-Scots community of post-World War Two Edinburgh.

This candid, vibrant memoir shares her struggle to bridge the gap between a traditional immigrant way of life and attaining her goal of becoming an independent-minded professional woman.

Through her journey beyond the expectations of family, she discovers how much relationships with other people enhance, inhibit and ultimately define self. Yet – like her relationship with her own mother – her ‘belonging’ in her Italian and Scottish heritages remains to this day unresolved and complex.

Reviews

Language of My Choosing throws fresh light on the Italian community in Scotland and gives its women their individual voice in a new way. This story resonates with the challenges of migration and immigration which we continue to face today. Donald Smith, Director of the Scottish Storytelling Centre

The language of the title is that of the author’s selfrealisation, as a professional, a mother and an artist. That language, born between different cultures, communities and religions, and between public and domestic life, emerges grateful, nurturing and affirmative. Meg Bateman, Poet

Bold and honest, raw at times but ultimately celebratory, beautifully written and razor sharp; a wonderful blend of autobiography and social history. Ann Marie Di Mambro, Playwright and Television Screenwriter

This is the story of a brave and clever woman who refused to deliver the lines that had been prepared for her by the Scottish Italian community that had both nurtured and wounded her. So she set about finding a language of her own choosing that would express the passions of her own restless soul. She has written a book that will challenge its readers to tear up all the scripts society has written for them and find their own words. Richard Holloway

Distinctive and strong. Dr Terri Colpi, University of St Andrews, author of The Italian Factor

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Author’s Note

Openings 
A Complicated Relationship with Milk

Backlights – Backdrop to my Life
Where it All Started: Viticuso, Frosinone, Italy
The Night Neighbours Became the Enemy
The Sinking of the Arandora Star

Highlights – Early Influences
A Contentious Marriage
The Power of an Italian Grandmother
A Family and Community in Transition
An Appraisal and Matters of Choice
Walking with and Losing Grandma
Terra Straniera: An Education

Spotlights
Glorious France: A Study in Self-Making
A Reluctant Homecoming
The Copper Kettle Chronicles
On the Matter of Rooting
Good Times with My Mother
Religion and Sexuality
The Loss of My Mother
The Oak Tree
The Mammissima

Footlights
Concluding Thoughts

Viticusar
The Language of Viticuso and Thereabouts

Timeline 

BIC Subject BM Memoirs
BISAC Subject BIO026000 BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Personal Memoirs
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