Stories by Barbie Latza Nadeau

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    The Italian Idol

    Forget about age, baldness, or any lines on his face—actor Toni Servillo is adored, admired, and desired.
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    A Certain Smile

    Archeologists are trying to finally identify the real-life Mona Lisa by exhuming skeletal remains and DNA testing.
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    Like father ...

    Will Silvio Berlusconi’s daughter take up his mantle?
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    A Reformer in Rome

    Pope Francis appears serious about changing the Vatican, but a scandal looms.
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    The Road to Greekovery

    Antonis Samaras is optimistic about Greece. But many of his countrymen aren’t buying it.
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    A Mother in Limbo

    A new Amanda Knox trial means mixed emotions for the victim’s mother.
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    Pristine Sistine

    Visitors to Michelangelo’s masterpiece get a spiritual cleansing.
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    Che Casino!

    (That’s Italian for ‘what a mess!’)
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    Send in the Clowns

    The Italian election—once more the theater of the absurd.
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    10 Rustic Rome Spots

    Descend into history at the Basilica of San Clemente and enjoy the best coffee in the city.
  • Economic Suicides in Italy

    Debt Most Deadly

    Recession and austerity fuel suicide in Italy—and the collection agency is exacerbating the situation.
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    Italian Stallion, Inc.

    Playboy industrialist Lapo Elkann vows to rehabilitate Italy's image—just as he did his own.
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    Not Just Any Old Charlatan

    Silvio Berlusconi embodies Italy’s greatest weaknesses and its worst instincts.
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    Italy’s Luxury Bailout

    With its economy in tatters, Italy was unable to preserve its cultural heritage—until the moguls arrived.
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    Exodus

    They are the new ‘boat people’— migrants and refugees forced to flee for Europe from Africa. Many have died making the journey.
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    Berlusconi Wins Confidence Vote While Rome Burns

    Italy’s 74-year-old prime minister narrowly won back-to-back confidence votes in the Senate and lower house of Parliament amid shouts of “coward” and a barrage of insults lobbed at him from opposition lawmakers as they cast their votes, and as students and anarchists rioted outside.
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    Berlusconi's Waterloo

    The prime minister says he is confident he has enough votes to stay in power, but by any measure he will not have enough to effectively govern Italy. It may simply be time for him to step aside and let someone else try to lead the country.