Dr. Alessandra Montalbano gives invited talk at OSU

Dr. Montalbano gave an invited talk at Ohio State University on March 6th entitled “Ransom Kidnapping in Italy: Crime, Memory, and Violence.” Description below:

“When we think about kidnapping in Italy, the first abduction that comes to mind is that of Aldo Moro, the former Prime Minister who was kidnapped and murdered by the terrorist group the Red Brigades in 1978. Yet kidnapping in Italy was not exclusively terrorist and ideological. On the contrary, it was a crime largely linked to Sardinian banditry, the Sicilian mafia (Cosa Nostra), and especially the Calabrian ’ndrangheta, who between the end of the 1960s and the end of the 1990s abducted nearly 700 people in Italy for ransom. Through the analysis of newspapers, broadcasts, parliamentary documents, and memoirs written by survivors, this talk explores the way the media represented this phenomenon and affected the audience, the public debates over how the state should combat the crime, and the testimonial narrative of the kidnapped against both their persecutors and political institutions. By focusing particularly on two pre-Moro case studies, this talk offers a narrative of 1970s Italy that, by looking at violence through criminal rather than political kidnapping, repositions that decade as the one in which organized crime horrified the Italian Republic.”