In the original introduction to Pascal D'Angelo's Son of Italy, the renowned literary critic Carl Van Doren praised D'Angelo's autobiography as an impassioned story of his "enormous struggles against every disadvantage". In his narrative of his fruitless labour as a "pick and shovel" worker in America, D'Angelo, who immigrated from the Abruzzi region of Italy, describes the harsh, often inhumane working conditions that immigrants had to endure at the beginning of the twentieth century. However, interested in more then just material success in America, D'Angelo quit working as a labourer to become a poet. He began submitting his poetry to some of America's most prestigious literary and cultural journals until he finally succeeded. But in his quest for acceptance, D'Angelo unwittingly exposed the complexities of assimilation. Like the works of many other immigrant writers at the time, D'Angelo's autobiography is a criticism of some of the era's most important social themes. Kenneth Scambray's afterword is an analysis of the complexities of this multifaceted autobiographical voice, which has been read as a simplistic immigrant narrative of struggle and success.
This is the first English reprint since its original publication in 1924.