Toward Making the Italians
In this closing chapter, the author argues that debate on the Questione del Mezzogiorno has begun to lose the harsh tone of the past and that the North–South gap has narrowed considerably. He highlights the country’s most recent efforts to improve the South’s living conditions, demonstrating that the area has made significant strides in overcoming cultural hurdles, including crime and illiteracy. He credits exterior forces, such as the European Union, with pressuring Rome to do away with cultural and bureaucratic practices that have discouraged investors from doing business in the country. The stage appears set for North and South to forsake their respective regionalism and see themselves as one, united people. With calculated optimism, DiMaria concludes that the ever-elusive goal of “making the Italians” is finally within reach.