CL4/LAZ: Language and Culture for Business Module 1: Italian Culture and Business Prof. Peter Cullen www.cl4englishlistening.wordpress.com
Introduction to Language, Culture and Business in Italy Why language, culture and business? International communication Modes in the English case: EFL ESL CLIL Since WWII the Italian economy has become increasingly involved in a US dominated global economy. But – English is not only for the English! Wall Street
Introduction to Language, Culture and Business in Italy Millions of non-native speakers use English frequently. It is a lingua franca – or global language It facilitates global interaction in politics, economics and culture BUT – communication is CULTURAL!!! Business MUST understand culturally contextualised MEANING!!!
Introduction to Language, Culture and Business in Italy For example: A contract means different things in different places – In the US – formal product to govern a relationship In Italy, formal recognition of a continuing relationship In Iraq – it is the formal recognition of the beginning of a relationship
Introduction to Language, Culture and Business in Italy How can we understand cultural contexts in business? 1° - WHAT IS LANGUAGE? 2° - WHAT IS CULTURE? 3° - WHAT IS BUSINESS? All of these are PROCESSES that form part of human behaviour.
What is Language? The language process uses a code to communicate a message from a producer to a receiver – but: Each variable depends on its relationship to the other variables for understanding to happen. Producer code message communication receiver understanding Feedback loop at each stage
Introduction to Language, Culture and Business in Italy Culture operates with a similar process. It includes language, but also: Physical relationships with the internal and external environments (mind – body, nature – nurture) based on the sensory perception Psychological perception, processing, memory and physical activation
Learning culture: Pierre Bourdieu and field , habitus, doxa
Field : the arena of social interaction – verticle and horizontal – constituted by the relational differences of social agents.
Habitus : lasting aquired schemes of perception, thought and action internally developed by
social agents in reaction to objective conditions (i.e. of field).
Doxa : deep-founded, unthought beliefs that inform an agent’s actions in the field . Universal
concepts. These propagate the structure of the field.
What is the role of culture in society? People are socially dependent. Social dependency requires communication of some form to: Establish behaviour – NORMS Reinforce accepted or functional behaviour Learn boundaries of acceptance/refusal The learning feedback loop makes culture active: It is the ways in which a society establishes, reinforces, and limits its behaviours within the group.
What is the role of culture in the economy? The concepts and actions that we define as “economic” are bound by culture. What are some concepts of “economy” and “business”?
What is the role of culture in the economy? Concepts: Production cost exchange Distribution price trade/exchange Consumption return value All of these concepts involve the learning feedback loop. Some of them directly involve a relationship to the physical world. Some of them are abstractions created for the purpose of understanding the physical world.
What is the role of culture in the economy? Value: The establishment of value is abstract, fluxuating, and dependent on the cultural feedback loop. It combines primary necessity with utility (abstract) Today, we use money to establish value. Luca Fantacci – money is: a means of exchange a measure of value a reserve of value All dependent on the cultural feedback loop.
What is the role of culture in society? TIME: a dependent variable The concept of time measures the rate of change. It is a tool. Tools are objects invented by man to interact with the internal and external environment. i.e. Memory/activity requires time production, distribution, consumption require time The approach to time is fundamental in economics
What is the role of culture in the economy? “ Time is money” – an american concept This is not true in real terms, but the metaphor guides american business practices. Can American concepts of time, expressed and learned in their business practices, be applied in other parts of the world – such as Italy? Why? Why not? How? Why is this an important question for Italians?
What is the role of culture in the economy? Answers to these questions are fundamental to success in business. Finding functional answers requires cultural contextualisations of relationships. contractual, informal, communications consumption, service... History can help find explanations of culturally specific behaviour in different regions. i.e. America is not Italy – why?
Fascism had significant support in the UK and the US as a way of bringing order to fragmented post-WWI Italian politics and economy
Mussolini wanted Germany to guarantee Italian border with Austria and signed the Kellog-Briand Pact (1928) of non-agression in Europe – hinted at war with France over borders as long as Austria remained a buffer with Germany
1932 – Mussolini assumes personal control over the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
1933 – he pushes for a “Pact of Four” between UK, France, Italy and Germany – taking for granted Grandi’s “weight that tips...” policy without having the real economic or military weight needed. Only UK signs
1934 – after a Nazi coup attempt in Vienna – Mussolini mobilised 4 divisions on the north-east border to thwart German expansion
5/10/1935 – Italian troops enter Ethiopia – upsetting African colonial powers. UK sends the fleet and Mussolini sends 3 divisions to the border with Egypt. Diplomatically resolved – Italy is allowed use of the Suez – but economic sanctions are imposed by the League of Nations on exports and oil/weapons imports
1936 – Mussolini sends 60,000 troops to Spain to support Franco
Fascism and the Build-up to War – Relations with Germany
1936 – Mussolini cedes the Foreign Ministry to Galeazzo Ciano
The Spanish Civil War is a meeting point for Hitler and Mussolini
24° Oct. 1936 – Ciano and his counterpart Neurath form the Rome-Berlin axis to counter bolshevism – inviting all European countries to participate – this indicates a return to German influence in the East
1938 – Anschluss with Austria must be accepted
Hitler guarantees Italian influence in the Med.
to cover the southern theatre in case of war with
UK and France
Fascism and the Build-up to War – Relations with Germany
German ministers court Italy in 1937-38
1937 status quo in Med = Gentlemen’s agreement
with the UK
29/09/1938 Munich meeting – Hitler states his confidence that Italy will stay by Germany in any eventuality – Mussolini attempts neutrality on Sudetenland
Badoglio and General Secretary Prunas of the Southern Kingdom look to Stalin for recognition of legitimacy as a national government – ’43 and ’44.
It was the British VIII army, however, that actually occupied the territory on the Adriatic side of the peninsula and guaranteed the removal of the Germans.
The Anglo-American forces, in the process of forming a joint staff in preparation for the invasion of France, forced the Southern Kingdom into a harsh armistice, without granting them the position of ally.
Badoglio attempts to declare war against Germany, but the declaration is “returned to sender”.
The southern kingdom is treated as a pacified enemy.
The South: Latifundia – agricultural production based on large, extensive land ownership worked by day labourers and employees/bondsmen who owed loyalty to the landowner. Labourers lived in agro-towns. Clientage relationships dominate.
Latifundia Reform 1882-1890 parcel out land to small holders/day labourers
Pre-mechanical grain economy = low productivity
high birth rates
complemented by sheep
1861-1907: labourer salaries reduced due to presence of grain threshers
1882-1890 reforms failed because large landowners were too influential in government: 1.5 million Sicilians emigrated to US, Canada, S. America between 1876 and 1925.
The Centre and North: Largely seft-sufficient markets based on mixed cultivation produced in the mezzadria system – peasant family leases the podere from the landlord (1 year renewable) and pays rent in kind at a rate of 50% of harvests.
5-6 people per family
Mixed agriculture = intense labour and high yield/hectare
Centre and North have access to oxen = smaller units can work more land.
North/South divide – in Southern Europe raising 1 ox requires +- 10-12 hectares. In northern Europe only 2-3 hectares needed.
Global Distribution of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises per 1000 People
World Transnational Parent Company Presence 1993-2005
Scale of Multinational Corporations a -1990 - 2005, b -Q3 2006 a b
FIAT: The Agnelli Empire (reported 2006) Dicembre G. Agnelli and Co. IFI IFIL FIAT Group “ Cascaded Companies A shares B shares 31.2% of votes 53% of votes* 65% of votes 30.3% of votes 3% of votes *% of extraordinary meeting votes – they hold all votes otherwise
PCI influenced groups radicalise (mainly youth) and form splinter extra-parlimentary groups: Lotta Continua, Potere operaio, Avanguardia operaia – workers rights become the cause of the student generation
By 1970 the istituzione delle regioni confer political power to new regional governments
AUTUNNO CALDO – Fall 1969 “New Left” members occupy the FIAT factory in Milan
Summer 1971 – Richard Nixon suspends the “convertability” of the US $ into gold – removing the $ from the gold exchange standard. (managing US debt was a form of managing the balance of payments in most of the non-Soviet world)
May 17, 1972 – Calabresi is assassinated in Milan – the Carabinieri attempt to blame Lotta Continua but in 1974 – two neo-fascist activists are indicted. This is the 1° political assassination of the 1970’s
1972 – Peteano – 3 Carabinieri killed in a bomb attack. Lotta Continua is blamed and some of its members are arrested. In the 1980s it was discovered that the bomb was made with military C-4 explosive, and a neo-fascist confessed.
1972 – 1974 sees a series of these right wing de-stabilising bombings.
Protagonist Count Edgardo Sogno wrote in his memoirs "the United States would have supported any initiative tending to keep the communists out of government." The CIA and Italian secret service supported this.
1974-1976 Potere operaio, Lotta Continua, and the Brigate Rosse disband or split apart after the 1974 arrest of the Red Brigade leaders Renato Curcio and Alberto Franceschini.
1973 Enrico Berlinguer, secretary of the PCI pushed through the Compromesso Storico – partially uniting and pacifying differences between the PCI, the socialists, and the DC – and afferming the non-Soviet characteristics of the PCI (condemned the invasion of Czech in 68).
The Centre-Left splintered by 76, allowing the PCI to take Italian politics further to the left.