|Rome viewed from Villa Aurelia's terrace|
The American Academy’s Villa Aurelia proudly crowns the Janiculum Hill, aloof and elegant and full of history. It is not easy to arrive by public transport and for years it was a place mostly frequented by the resident scholars, lucky recipients of the prestigious Rome Prizes.
Over the past several years the American Academy has continued its policy of opening up to local creative people of all nationalities thus enriching the scholars in residence and enlarging the circle of scholarship and community.
|security at Villa Aurelia|
|Villa Aurelia by night|
Last Tuesday it was a pleasure to see a full house listening attentively to the speakers at the conversation about Women and the Social Media.
Among those present the newly arrived Irish Ambassador, Bobby McDonagh, local bloggers, academics, art historians, students and journalists.
|a goup of local writers and journalists|
The emphasis was on how social media, internet, the 24-hour news cycle and the democratized internet can be used to empower women worldwide. The panelists each narrated personal incidents, discussed the present day situation and strategies for the future.
|the distinguished panelists|
The Italian speakers lauded their American counterparts for their knowhow and gumption, for it was pointed out that Italian women are woefully behind perhaps due to shyness and cultural mores.
“But”, Sabina Ciuffini explained, “ we Italians are better cooks”.
|Sabina Ciuffini, a blast from the past|
|Mary Beard speaks with Kim Bowes|
The bilingual conference included a Skype connection with Dr. Cecilia Kyenge in Strasbourg and was skillfully coordinated by Kim Bowes of the American Academy.
Panelists were author Mary Beard, the former White House Communications Director for Health Care Linda Douglass, blogger and entrepreneur Sabina Ciuffini www.unaqualunque.it and former Italian Minister Dr. Cecilia Kyenge .
|prosecco after the conference|