JoeyPinkney.com Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
Tristan Gans, author of “Stranieri: Life Among Italy’s Tourists, Expats, and Immigrants”
(Belfort and Bastion)
In 2008, Tristan Gans and his fiancée Sarah went to Italy to recuperate from college. They found themselves in an industrial city where the locals were hostile—but not the other foreigners, “Stranieri,” living and working in Italy despite the objections of the “real” Italians.
But, as Gans soon realizes, it is the Strangers who hold the whip hand. It is they who provide the services, labor, and energy that the Italians cannot seem to produce for themselves. In this thought-provoking book, he asks what will Italy be, and how will “native” Italians react, when Italy is as much African, Pakistani, and Slav as it is Latin.
But Gans doesn’t stop there. In this multifaceted, multilayered work, Gans uses Italy as a metaphor for the West as a whole—a West that may be, he suggests, sliding into postindustrial irrelevance.
And for Gans that possibility has a unique piquancy. He is, he explains, a Millennial, and like most upper-middle class members of his generation he has from his earliest youth been taught to seek success, even greatness at all costs. But “greatness,” as Baby Boomer parents defined it, may not be possible in an age of decline.
Joey Pinkney: Where did you get the inspiration to write “Stranieri: Life Among Italy’s Tourists, Expats, and Immigrants“?
Tristan Gans: I tried to do a lot of traveling when I was living in Europe–backpacking, taking local trains and low-cost flights to see friends and go to Continue reading 5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… Tristan Gans, author of Stranieri: Life Among Italy’s Tourists, Expats, and Immigrants