By John E. Zucchi
Read or Download The Little Slaves of the Harp: Italian Child Street Musicians in Nineteenth-Century Paris, London, and New York PDF
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Additional resources for The Little Slaves of the Harp: Italian Child Street Musicians in Nineteenth-Century Paris, London, and New York
The contracts stipulated that the children were to be cared for, fed, and clothed by the padroni. The clothes they wore and the food they ate would have seemed strange to New Yorkers or Londoners. " Perhaps it was the same reporter who, a year later, interviewed three boys aged six, eight, and twelve. Pietrocito and Rocco-Terzo were from Laurenzana, one of the important sending towns in Basilicata. Franceschito was from a nearby town. All lived in the same building on Crosby Street; all had been "sold" to a master by their parents; all claimed to have been beaten into silence by their respective padroni.
Deforestation and the redistribution of dernesnial lands also 2O Little Slaves of the Harp upset the peasant economy, as did the rapid increase in population. It is difficult to generalize for all three areas of the Appenines from which the musicians came. By focusing on one of these Parma and its adjacent Appenine towns in Liguria - we can gain an understanding of some of the general factors that motivated the street musicians and other peasants to leave their homes. The earliest child and adult street entertainers came from the villages near Parma in a section of high ground known as Monte Pelpi.
Children were to meet a daily quota or risk a beating. As a result, many children either left their padroni or sought refuge among young companions from their home town. Two such young minstrels from Viggiano could not be traced. Because of the threat to the children's health and morals, the consul asked the local police for their co-operation in stamping out the trade. The police responded that they would attempt to end the trade, and if they could not do so they would increase surveillance.