Umbria: Life in the past

by Marta Zerbini and Elena Tardioli (1994), LSP Assisi/Italy

Hi everybody! We have read and seen some interviews done by other groups that treated the theme of life in the past, so we have decided to take it as the starting point for our work. For us, living in our region, Umbria,  is very important to have a strong and lasting attachment  with our  origins and with our grandparents, that represent our past, culture and traditions.

The aim of our interviews was to understand    living conditions during the 40s and the 50s and inform our Comenius partners on it. To do this we have asked our grandparents some questions. This is the result of our survey.

Umbria has always been an agricultural territory whose economy is based on  agriculture: so most Umbrian families have always lived in relation to the plantations. In the years we have taken into exam,  people were considered lucky  if they had small pieces of land or little farms, because this kind of property meant wellbeing and wealth. The rich, that were often landowners, could live according to a comfortable standard, using cars to move around, living in big houses often in the city, watching television and getting a formal education. On the contrary,  the poor or the people living in the countryside had smaller houses and couldn’t afford a car, a proper education or, later,  a TV.

Assisi in 1955

Although in the post war years poverty was widespread, every member of the family was considered and respected by the others, especially the elderly ones: there was in fact a strong attachment not only between  parents and children, but among generations. The woman was very busy in the house and she did all the housework from the control of the hen-house to the kitchen management,  while the man worked all day long in the fields.

Was it the same in your countries?

One Response to “Umbria: Life in the past”

  1. Żaba Monika says:

    Es scheint, dass unsere Großeltern die ähnlichen Lebensbedingungen hatten. Die Bauer lebten von der Landwirtschaft, die Stadtbewohner arbeiteten in Gruben und Hütten. Nur wenige waren reich, hatten große Häuser und konnten studieren. Gewöhnlich waren das die aktiven Parteimitglieder oder Politiker.
    Was hat doch verursacht, dass unser Land unter Rücksicht auf Wirtschaft und Lebensstandard hinten geblieben ist? … „Freundschaft mit der Sowjetunion“, Mitgliedschaft im Ostblock oder …