The Expats: Afroitalian People in the World

“I moved to New York a year ago, leaving home and a great family..I needed to change, to grow..” these are the voice-over words  we hear in the trailer of The Expats while watching a silent white girl choosing a dress, taking a bus, strolling around… “My name is Sarah, I’m 25, I’m from Milan and this is my story”. Suddenly the camera moves to a black girl with afro hair: she’s the one who’s talking.

Our unconscious tendency to have stereotypical categories brings us to have certain expectations about certain people, and this is precisely what the web-series is about. It consist of six episodes/interviews to six young Italians expatriated in search of a good job. Most of them are afro-italians, a term we hear very rarely, being Italy a country still not aware of its own growing multi-ethnicity.

The Expats project was launched by Johanne Affricot, founder of GRIOT, a blog mag focused on the themes of diversity and creativity. The title itself consciously could generate  wrong expectations: “expats” is a term commonly used for people moving abroad for work, often those working for big companies. White people indeed. …because a black man in the same situation is supposed to be defined as “immigrant”, at least in our perception.

Among the series we’ll meet a dj, a photographer etc…each of them somehow involved in the field of creativity. They talk about their decision to leave, work opportunities, and, of course, their identity…Do they consider themselves Italians? We’ll get different answers: Pierre feels 100% Italian, Audeze has felt always a Ghanese stranger in Italy, but in Ghana she’s considered an “European”. Ambiguous figures, sons of an era of great social changes.

Calogero Gambino


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