Fulbright Scholar from Italy Comes to Seton Hall
Italian Fulbright Scholar Claudio Staiti (left), with La Motta Endowed Chair William Connell and Seton Hall Provost Katia Passerini.
Seton Hall is well-known for its faculty and students who win Fulbright Scholarships to study in other parts of the world, but the Fulbright Program also offers highly competitive grants to bring scholars from other countries to the United States to pursue their research. This semester (Spring 2023) Claudio Staiti of Italy is in residence at Seton Hall, hosted by the History Department and the Italian Studies Program. Staiti hails from Messina, where he did his doctoral work, and he is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of San Marino. His research focuses on relations between Italy and the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and he thus belongs to the growing cadre of historians in Italy who are studying the history and impact of the global Italian Diaspora.
Staiti's publications include two important books. In 2019 he published a modern Italian edition of Vincenzo D'Aquila's memoir, Bodyguard Unseen, in which the author, a naturalized Italian immigrant to the United States from Italy, tells the passionate tale of how, with the outbreak of World War I, he returned to Italy to volunteer as an infantryman to fight the Austrians. In the trenches he became a convinced pacifist, which resulted in his being sent to an insane asylum. In 2022 Staiti published a valuable collection of letters, diary extracts, and memoirs that were written by Sicilian soldiers who were fighting at the front during the first world war. His current project, which draws on the resources of the Hoover Institution at Stanford, the New York Public Library, and Seton Hall's Valente Italian Library, is a study of the controversial Italian American journalist Gino Speranza, who was prominent in the period from 1900 to 1927.
In April, Staiti will be giving a public lecture. He remains here until June, and he has a study carrel in the Walsh Library. He will be delighted to meet with students and faculty, and all who are interested should seek him out through the Italian Studies Office, Walsh Library Room 324, (973) 275-2967.