Deconstructing the Myth of La Dolce Vita: an Analysis of Italian Women’s Disparity in Southern Italy

Emilie LaVoie-Ingram, Dr. Annmarie Willette, Department of Communication, Department of Global Teaching and Learning, Jacksonville University, 2800 University Boulevard North, Jacksonville FL 32211

Hidden behind the picture-perfect coastline of Italy and the lavish life on the Mediterranean Sea, an unpromising reality looms over the dreams of its female citizens. Institutionalized and maintained for years, the patriarchy in Italy systematically perpetuates inequality for women, while locking them out of occupational and financial security.  

Previous studies and surveys reveal a seemingly ideal wage and employment rate for men and women alike. However, those numbers are deliberately misleading. Men and women earn nearly identical qualifications and degrees across all fields of work, yet staunch gender roles and conservative patriarchal values construct an impassable wall between women and financial independence.  

Paralleling this problem, women labor a longer workday, often encumbered with the responsibilities of childcare, housework, and unpaid labor at family businesses. The undesirability of women in the workforce contributes to a detrimental state and decline in the prosperity of women. As men control the primary media output, these issues garner no spotlight necessary for change.  

This institutionalized crisis of equity restricts the advancement of a society resulting in the silence and financial dependence of nearly half a population. By analyzing world-wide economic and employment reports, this research seeks to illustrate an accurate analysis of the financial data while providing insight into the cultural and societal norms that prevent social progress. The project launched when an undergraduate student traveled to study in southern Italy for a communications and culture course.

Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Emilie LaVoie-Ingram

Institution: Jacksonville University

Type: Poster

Subject: Interdisciplinary Studies

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 8
Date/Time: Tue 5:00pm-6:00pm
Session Number: 5510