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The “Guido” Phenomenon

February 17, 2010 | CUNY Lecture Series, Queens College

The 20-something stars of the MTV reality series “Jersey Shore” proudly refer to themselves as “guidos” and “guidettes” — terms that leave others in the Italian-American community crying foul. “When I was growing up, it was part of social identification for young people,” said New York State Sen. Diane Savino. “Today MTV has chosen to take something and turn it into a pejorative.” Savino, whose district encompasses parts of Brooklyn and Staten Island, took part in a colloquium entitled, “Guido: An American Youth Style,” sponsored by the John D. Calandra Italian American Institute at Queens College, which explored the “guido culture” glamorized by the show’s party lifestyle. Panelists included Queensborough Community College sociologist Donald Tricarico and New Jersey caterer Johnny DeCarlo, who has auditioned for “Jersey Shore.”
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