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ref:topbtw-959.html/ 6 Agosto 2017/A

Italiani in Cina...
Interview: Italians in China
I choose nurture. What about you?

Cina: da un posto qualsiasi..

I have interviewed two Italian kids who have come to China with their families, and have asked them questions mainly about their identity, as they are exposed to numerous cultures.

Thank you to L. and M.G. (as they have asked to be referred to) for allowing me to interview them.
1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

L.: I'm a teenager named L.
I was born in China and have always lived there.
My parents have been in China for around 18 years.
I can fluently speak Chinese because I went to a Chinese elementary school.

M.G.: Hello, my name is M.G., my mother is Italian and my father is German.
I now live in China.

2. When you go to Italy, do you tell people you live in China?
Do they treat you differently?

L.: When I go to Italy, I only tell them I live in China if they ask me or I need to explain something.
For example, if I go in a store to buy school shoes, I need to tell them that I live in China because in Italy, kids don't need special shoes for school.

They are usually more interested in me, but they don't treat me differently.

M.G.: When I am in Italy yes, I do tell people I live in China, but I don't get the feeling of being treated differently.

I sometimes feel that I haven't been in Italy for long enough to get used to the environment, the people and the language.

3. What differences can you see between Italy and China?

L.: I can't really explain the differences between Italy and China.
The feeling is different, when I go to Italy the moment I get off the airplane everything starts changing.
Everything just looks familiar.
It makes you think
"This is my hometown, this is where I was supposed to be".

M.G.: Italy has beautiful nature and beautiful lakes.
The food is pretty good compared to China where there is nature but not really a nice view.
However, it isn't easy to compare a European country and an Asian country because they have different cultures, different traditions etc.

China is China and Italy is Italy.

4. What differences can you see between Italians and Chinese people?

L.: Personally, I think there aren't any big differences, we are just humans, we speak different languages but we are the same.

M.G.: Italian people talk a lot and have lots of hand gestures.
Their behavior is very different.

5. Do you feel more Italian or Chinese, or another nationality entirely?

L.: Usually when people ask me this question I will answer them "I feel like I'm in the middle between being Italian or Chinese".

I feel more Chinese because I know the language better, but I do think that my mind is Italian.

M.G.: I feel German.

6. In what country do you see your future?

L.: China, because I know it way more than Italy:
I know the system better.
I never asked myself this question, so I never thought of it.
M.G.: Germany.

7. Do you encourage more people to travel, or do you think it's best to remain in one town?

L.: I do encourage people to travel more, it's an experience that people should have at least once in their lifetime.
I've always traveled since I was young, it's something that is simply part of my life.

M.G.: I encourage people to travel because they can see different countries, different views and perspectives.
Traveling also helps you to understand other countries better.

These are two very different Italian lives in China.

They are both kids of Italian emigrants, but their thoughts and feelings about China and Italy are varied.

Being the daughter of an Italian emigrant family as well, I can relate with things they say:
for example, I also don't feel completely Italian, but also very English, since I speak it at school.

I am genetically Italian and I will always be, but I speak English at school and I share my feelings and thoughts with my friends and classmates in English.

I write better in English, I understand better English ways, and I do see my future in an English-speaking country.

M.G wants to live in Germany, and L. is certain to live in China.

This simple interview proves that identity is shaped though culture.

You may physically resemble someone of a country, but that doesn't mean your identity belongs to that nationality as well:
and it doesn't have to.

I know that most of my friends which have immigrated to China don't feel Chinese but not their original nationality either.

Identity is shaped every day, from things you are exposed to and encouraged to copy.

And copying them doesn't mean ignoring your 'roots'.

It only means that you are exploring different perspectives of the world, as both L. and M.G. elaborate in question 7.

What do I think?
I think that people should travel more, and eventually settle down in another country that isn't their own.

I think that people shouldn't be chained down to one view of life, but be able to explore without being judged.
In a Utopian world, it could be possible to immigrate without having to worry about time and money and discrimination, and be able to often come back to visit friends and family.
Moral of this article:
someone please invent teleportation !
Humanity thanks you :-D

Real moral of this article:
it's ok not to have a specific nationality - we all share one planet, so in the end, it doesn't matter where you live or which nationality you feel like or which nationality you actually are.

If there is one thing I've learnt, it's that you shape your own life every day.

If that means another house in another city in another country, so be it.

It's simply about nature vs. nurture.
I choose nurture.
What about you?

Cortesia di L.B.

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