Thursday, October 23, 2014

Women, Books and Blogs at the American Academy in Rome

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 

Linda Douglass

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 and former Italian Minister Dr. Cecilia Kyenge . 
 prosecco after the conference 

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