The American Italian Cultural Center offers a monthly lecture series exploring a variety of Italian cultural and historical topics. The lectures are free for AICC members and students with a valid university or high school ID. There is a suggested $10 donation for non-members.

Author Reading: Kathy Curto

Thursday, July 11, 2019, 6:30pm

Join us at the AICC on Thursday, July 11 for an author presentation and book signing with Kathy Curto featuring Not for Nothing: Glimpes into a Jersey Girlhood.

“In this tense and tender memoir, Curto dishes up her family’s crazy moody love like rich red Italian gravy. Sometimes platters of it smash against the wall, sometimes warm bowls are savored on a lap. Too often, the plate is empty – with devastating consequences. But the reader feasts…Mangia Bene!”

-Irene O’Garden, Off-Broadway playwright

Curto’s book is a snapshot of an Italian American girlhood in Jersey: the trials and the tribulations. I devoured this book in one sitting.

-Megan (AICC)


Book Talk: La Passione How Italy Seduced the World

Wednesday, May 8, 2019, 6:00pm

Join New York Times best-selling author Dianne Hales for a presentation & signing of her newest book: La Passione: How Italy Seduced the World.

“[Hales’] love affair with Italy shines through as she recounts the histories of colorful characters who made their names through war, art, food, wine, music, and more. She brings the reader with her to experience the country’s long-lasting traditions and the people whose dedication keeps that legacy alive today… Frothy as a cappuccino and rich as tiramisu, La Passione is a delightful excursion into the heart of Italian culture.”



Challenging What You Thought About Sicilian New Orleans

Thursday, March 21, 2019, 6:30pm

In this talk, Dr. Justin Nystrom of Loyola University New Orleans will share some of the bigger surprises that came out of the research for his recent book, Creole Italian. This work documents the important role that Sicilian immigrants played in making New Orleans into one of the world’s great food cities.

Justin Nystrom is an associate professor of history and directs the Center for the Study of New Orleans at Loyola University New Orleans. He is the author of New Orleans after the Civil War: Race, Politics, and a New Birth of Freedom and the forthcoming Creole Italian: How Sicilian Immigrants Shaped the Culture of America’s Most Interesting Food Town.


Michelangelo and the Popes

Thursday, March 14, 2019, 6:30pm

All Michelangelo wanted to be was a sculptor, but Pope Julius II had other ideas, as did Pope Leo X, Pope Clement VII, and Pope Paul III.

A long line of Popes with an eye for talent commissioned Michelangelo, often against his will, to create works of art and architecture which the artist accomplished so superbly that the works continue to draw people from around the world to see some 500 years later.

Come see and learn about Michelangelo’s magnificent works commissioned by Popes during his lifetime including the Sistine Chapel Ceiling, the statue of Moses, the Last Judgment and even St. Peter’s Basilica! We will discover how and why the Popes coaxed the great master into the fields of painting and architecture when all he wanted to do was carve marble.

Join Tom Cortazzo at the AICC for this fantastic lecture on Thursday, March 14, 2019!


Poppy Tooker’s Pascal’s Manale Cookbook Signing

Thursday, January 10, 2019, 6:30pm

Poppy Tooker, a native New Orleanian and Louisiana food icon, has created yet another fascinating culinary history and cookbook—this time on Pascal’s Manale, the second oldest continually operating family-owned restaurant in New Orleans, second only to Antoine’s. Join us on Thursday, January 10, 2019 for a book talk and signing with Poppy! She will present the cookbook and we’ll learn about the history of Pascal’s Manale.

Cookbooks may be pre-ordered or purchased the night of the event.


Trivia Italian Style

Wednesday, November 28, 2018, 6:30pm

What food was considered scandalous if consumed by women in public during the Renaissance? Why is carpaccio called carpaccio; the Bellini, the Bellini? Who saved the Ponte Vecchio from certain destruction during World War II? How did the Colosseum get its name?

A special super fun “edu-taining” program for anyone curious about (or already in amore with) Italy and its delicioso cuisine and astonishing culture. Carla Gambescia, author of La Dolce Vita University: An Unconventional Guide to Italian Culture from A-Z – an eclectic compendium all things Italian: food, wine, history, architecture, art, style, anecdotes, attitude – will be our “MC” and guide as you test your knowledge while discovering surprising new facts and insights about “The Boot”.

Join us and bring your “Inner Italian”!