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Sunday 20.08.2017 | Name days: Bernhards, Boriss

More Italian adults live with parents

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New research says that a third of adult Italians – and more than 60 percent of young adults – live with their parents. Experts say that hard economic times have exacerbated the cultural phenom.

Among the 18-29 year old age bracket, the proportion rises to a staggering 61 percent. Of those who do not live at home, 42 percent reside within a 30-minute walk of their parents, CS Monitor reported.

The phenomenon is not new. Like most Mediterranean countries, Italy places a strong emphasis on family solidarity. Mothers still hold a revered role in Italian society, and Italians of all classes and ages maintain strong loyalty to their home regions – a phenomenon known as “campanilismo,” defined as “an exaggerated attachment to the customs and traditions of one’s own town.”

Young Italians travel much less than their counterparts in Britain, Germany, or Australia – it is rare to encounter Italians among the backpacking crowd doing the rounds of Asia, Africa, and South America, for instance.

But the cultural trend has been accentuated by the current economic crisis – the number of young Italians living at home is up from 48 percent in 1990.

Italians are having to stick together more than ever in the face of rising fuel and food costs, almost negligent economic growth, workplace layoffs, and a harsh package of austerity cuts. While average unemployment among Italians is around 10 percent, it leaps to more than 30 percent for those in their 20s.

“It is true that there is a cultural predisposition for young Italians to stay close to their parents, but the biggest factors are economic. Italians can’t afford to leave home. When my son graduated as an engineer, his first job paid him 800 euros a month – that was not enough even to pay for the rent in Milan,” says Roberto D’Alimonte, a political scientist at Luiss University in Rome.

They are left with little choice but to remain living at home, often to an age which would be regarded as socially embarrassing in northern Europe and North America – a quarter of Italians aged 30 to 44 still live with their mother and father, the survey found.

In Italy, the tight family structure is seen largely as a positive thing – in fact, Coldiretti and Censis called their report “The economic crisis – living together, living better.”

Ref.110.110.110.2090


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