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Savin Mattozzi

Naples, Italy
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About Savin
Savin Mattozzi is a journalist based in Naples, Italy. He covers history, culture and politics in southern Italy and the Mediterranean region. His work has been featured in National Geographic, Al Jazeera, Euronews, Are We Europe and Hyphen among others.
English Italian
Feature Stories Research Investigative Journalism
Politics Current Affairs Natural Disasters

Meal of the Autumn: Europe’s five most iconic and belly-warming soups

29 Sep 2023  |  euronews
As autumn arrives, Europe's most iconic soups offer comfort and warmth. The list includes borscht from Eastern Europe, matzo ball soup from the Ashkenazi Jewish community, avgolemono soup from Greece, kharcho beef soup from Georgia, and Spain's sopa de ajo. Each soup is described by its key ingredients and flavors, with a detailed recipe provided for sopa de ajo.

Maison Gainsbourg: First cultural institution dedicated to French icon Serge Gainsbourg opens

20 Sep 2023  |  www.euronews.com
The former home of French singer-songwriter Serge Gainsbourg in Paris has been transformed into a house museum, organized by his daughter Charlotte Gainsbourg. The museum offers a 30-minute tour of the nearly intact residence, accompanied by a museum, gift shop, and café. Gainsbourg, known for his provocative music and art, remains a celebrated figure in French culture. The opening marks the first cultural institution dedicated to him, with all tickets for the house tour already sold out.

Meal of the Week: Eat, it’s your civic duty - Italian blue crab pasta

25 Aug 2023  |  www.euronews.com
Italy faces an invasion of Atlantic blue crabs, which have significantly impacted local shellfish production. The Italian government has allocated €2.9 million to fishing cooperatives to reduce crab numbers and encourages the public to consume the crabs. The article provides a recipe for Italian blue crab pasta, blending environmental concerns with culinary solutions.

Robert De Niro celebrates his 80th birthday: his most memorable roles in cinema

17 Aug 2023  |  fr.euronews.com
Robert De Niro celebrates his 80th birthday, prompting a reflection on his most memorable roles in cinema. The article highlights his performances in iconic films such as Taxi Driver, The Godfather Part II, Raging Bull, and anticipates his potential third Oscar for Killers of the Flower Moon. It also discusses his roles in GoodFellas, Awakenings, A Bronx Tale, Heat, Meet the Parents, and The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, showcasing his versatility and impact on the film industry. The piece is a tribute to De Niro's enduring legacy and contributions to cinema.

X Games: Italians vie for Musk-Zuckerberg duel

17 Aug 2023  |  es.euronews.com
Local governments across Italy, from the northern plains to the rocky coasts of Sicily, are competing to host a potential duel between billionaires Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg. Despite no agreement on whether the event will occur, Italian towns and cities are showcasing their archaeological sites to the world. Musk proposed the idea of an 'epic location' in Italy, and discussed it with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and Culture Minister Gennaro Sangiuliano. The Ministry of Culture is working on organizing the event while protecting the venues, with a significant donation to two Italian pediatric hospitals being part of the plan. Potential locations include ancient amphitheaters in Pompeya and Verona, among others. While the tech giants have yet to decide on the event, Italian localities continue to offer their venues, hoping for investment through the 'fight of the century' between Zuckerberg and Musk.

Robert De Niro at 80: His most memorable film roles

17 Aug 2023  |  www.euronews.com
Robert De Niro celebrates his 80th birthday, and Euronews Culture reflects on his most memorable film roles. De Niro's performances in iconic films such as 'GoodFellas', 'Awakenings', 'A Bronx Tale', 'Heat', 'Meet the Parents', and 'The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle' are highlighted. The article discusses his range from intense dramatic roles to comedic performances, and anticipates a potential Oscar win for his upcoming film 'Killers of the Flower Moon'.

50 Years of hip-hop: A chronological look at the genre’s essential records

13 Aug 2023  |  www.euronews.com
Hip-hop, celebrating its 50th anniversary, has evolved from a niche movement in New York to a global cultural phenomenon. Euronews Culture presents a chronological list of essential hip-hop albums that have shaped the genre. From The Sugarhill Gang's pioneering debut to Kendrick Lamar's introspective 'To Pimp A Butterfly', these albums highlight the genre's rich history and its impact on music and culture. The list includes influential works by Run-DMC, Public Enemy, N.W.A, Beastie Boys, De La Soul, A Tribe Called Quest, MC Solaar, Dr. Dre, Wu Tang Clan, Guru, Nas, The Fugees, IAM, Notorious B.I.G., Lauryn Hill, Eminem, OutKast, Missy Elliott, Madvillain, J Dilla, Kanye West, Run The Jewels, and Little Simz. Each album is celebrated for its unique contribution to hip-hop, showcasing the genre's creativity, innovation, and social consciousness.

The not-so-Dolce Vita: How super wealthy tourists are making a parallel Italy for themselves

12 Aug 2023  |  euronews.com
Starting in 2024, the luxurious 'La Dolce Vita' train service operated by Orient Express will offer exclusive travel across Italy, with ticket prices ranging from €6,600 to €25,000 per night. The service raises ethical concerns as it caters to the super-rich while traversing some of Italy's poorest regions, where many struggle with basic needs. The article questions the morality of such opulence amidst poverty and criticizes the service for offering an inauthentic experience that avoids the realities of local life. It also highlights the environmental marketing tactics used by the Orient Express, which contrast with the likely non-eco-friendly travel methods of the guests. The author, Savin Mattozzi, an Italian journalist, calls for genuine curiosity and engagement with the country's culture, rather than a sanitized, luxury experience.

The hidden green oases of Naples: Repurposing forgotten spaces for the people

08 Aug 2023  |  euronews.com
Naples, one of Europe's most densely populated cities, is discovering hidden green oases within its urban landscape. Architect and Ph.D. student Simone Castaldi explains that historically, only the wealthy had access to green spaces, but now the community is reclaiming these areas. Notable examples include the garden of Palazzo Venezia and the Hopestel: Secret Garden. Leftist groups have also transformed abandoned structures into social centers like Ex OPG. Research led by Professor Pasquale Miano at the University of Naples Federico II aims to connect and publicize the city's abandoned green spaces, potentially transforming Naples' use of green areas and improving residents' quality of life.

Two new country music videos polarize fans

07 Aug 2023  |  es.euronews.com
Country music fans are divided over two music videos by prominent artists with radically different views on the genre's representation. Jason Aldean's 'Try That in a Small Town' has been criticized for instigating violence and racial vigilance, while Tyler Childers' 'In Your Love' is praised for inclusivity, depicting a gay love story in a 1950s mining town. The article also references historical political controversies in country music, including the Chicks' 2003 anti-war comments and the genre's association with both right-wing and left-leaning artists.

The dividing line: how two new country music videos are polarizing fans

07 Aug 2023  |  euronews
Country music fans are divided over two music videos by Jason Aldean and Tyler Childers, which present contrasting views on the genre's representation. Aldean's 'Try That in a Small Town' has been criticized for inciting violence and racial unrest, while Childers' 'In Your Love' has been praised for its tender portrayal of a gay love story and for representing the LGBTQ+ community. The article reflects on country music's history of political controversy, noting instances of both conservative and progressive stances among its artists.

Walking the line: How two new country music videos are polarizing fans

06 Aug 2023  |  www.euronews.com
Country music fans are divided over two new music videos by Jason Aldean and Tyler Childers, which present contrasting views on social issues. Aldean's 'Try That in a Small Town' has been criticized for promoting violence and racism, while Childers' 'In Your Love' is praised for its representation of a gay love story in a 1950s coal mining town. The article also touches on historical political rifts in country music, noting that despite its current right-wing affiliation, many famous singers have leftist backgrounds.

Ancient Roman shipwreck discovered near Italian capital with near intact cargo

31 Jul 2023  |  euronews.com
An ancient Roman cargo ship dating back to the 1st and 2nd century BCE was discovered by Italy's Carabinieri off the coast near Civitavecchia, 80 kilometers west of Rome. The shipwreck, found 160 meters beneath the sea, is estimated to be 20 to 30 meters long and contains hundreds of intact amphorae. While the ship's origin is speculated to be Spain, carrying goods like olives and fruits, further research is expected to reveal more about its cargo. This discovery adds to the understanding of the complex trade routes of the Roman Empire across the Mediterranean.

Hungary fines bookstore and pressures others to seal LGBTQ books

14 Jul 2023  |  www.euronews.com
Hungary's right-wing government fined a bookstore chain, Lira Kiskereskedelmi Kft, €32,000 for displaying 'Heartstopper', a young adult graphic novel with LGBTQ themes, in the children's section, violating a 2021 law against distributing such content to minors. The largest bookseller, Libri, has started plastic wrapping LGBTQ books to comply with the law. The 'child protection law' has faced criticism from within Hungary and the EU, and a recent addition to the law was vetoed by President Katalin Novak, although the veto may be overridden. The European Commission has initiated a legal case against Hungary for its treatment of the LGBTQ community.

Mystic pizza! Pompeii fresco might show ancient 'pizza predecessor'

27 Jun 2023  |  www.euronews.com
A recently uncovered fresco in Pompeii depicts a flatbread with toppings that closely resembles modern pizza, despite lacking key ingredients like tomatoes and mozzarella. Archaeologist Alessandro Russo notes the significance of this find, which connects ancient culinary practices to contemporary ones. The fresco, part of a traditional Greek offering, includes toppings such as pomegranate and possibly dates. This discovery is one of many that highlight the rich cultural history preserved in the Pompeii Archaeological Park.

Meal of the Week: A Calabrian favourite - Mulingiani Chjini

15 Jun 2023  |  euronews.com
Euronews Culture features a Calabrian dish, Mulingiani Chjini, a spicy stuffed aubergine recipe. Aubergine, a versatile vegetable native to Southeast Asia, is popular in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine. The recipe includes aubergines, parmesan cheese, dried bread, eggs, cherry tomatoes, garlic, basil, Calabrian chilli peppers, olive oil, and salt. The method involves boiling aubergines, preparing a filling, stuffing the aubergines, and pan-frying them. The dish is part of the 'Meal of the Week' series, highlighting lesser-known regional favorites.

Meal of the Week: A dish steeped in Italian history - Polpo alla Luciana

02 Jun 2023  |  www.euronews.com
Polpo alla Luciana, a traditional seafood dish from Naples, is celebrated for its historical roots in the Santa Lucia neighborhood. The dish, named after the area, involves cooking octopus in a tomato-based sauce with olives, garlic, and chili. The article provides a detailed recipe, emphasizing the dish's cultural significance and traditional preparation methods.

Meal of the Week: Taking it to the streets - A savoury Neapolitan sandwich

23 May 2023  |  www.euronews.com
Naples is celebrated for its street food scene, with the cuzzetiello, a sandwich with various Neapolitan fillings, standing out as a popular choice. Originally a family tradition involving leftover ragù in bread, it has evolved into a street food staple with diverse fillings. The article provides a recipe for making a cuzzetiello with spicy sausage, sweet peppers, and other ingredients, emphasizing its flexibility and the messy joy of eating it.

Photos: Napoli fans celebrate Italian football league title

05 May 2023  |  www.aljazeera.com
Napoli fans celebrated their team's victory as the 2023 Italian Serie A champions, marking their first title win since 1990. The decisive goal was scored by Victor Osimhen in a match against Udinese. The victory holds significant socio-political meaning for the southern city of Naples, which faces high youth unemployment and poverty rates. The celebrations, involving hundreds of thousands of Neapolitans, are expected to continue as the city welcomes the team back.

Fever pitch as Napoli on brink of first Serie A title since 1990

30 Apr 2023  |  www.aljazeera.com
Napoli is on the verge of winning their first Serie A title since 1990, a victory that would be symbolic for the city of Naples, which has faced discrimination and economic challenges. The team's resurgence under the ownership of Aurelio De Laurentiis and the coaching of Luciano Spalletti, along with the performances of players like Victor Osimhen and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, has brought them to the cusp of a historic win. The city is alive with anticipation, with fans and residents expressing their pride and hope for a triumph that transcends football, reflecting a defiance against historical oppression and discrimination.

Meal of the Week: A Naples vegetarian special - Carciofi alla Napoletana

29 Apr 2023  |  www.euronews.com
Carciofi alla Napoletana, a Neapolitan artichoke dish, is highlighted as a vegetarian option in Naples, where meat and seafood are prevalent. The dish's origins are unclear, but artichokes have been a part of Mediterranean cuisine for centuries. The recipe provided includes artichokes, spicy red pepper, garlic, black olives, parsley, lemon, olive oil, black pepper, and salt. The preparation involves cleaning, cutting, and cooking the artichokes with the other ingredients, resulting in a dish that can be served as a side or main course.

Welcome to Chiku, Italy’s and perhaps Europe’s first restaurant that fuses together traditional Neapolitan and Roma food

22 Apr 2023  |  euronews
Chiku is a pioneering restaurant in the Scampia neighbourhood of Naples, Italy, known for combining traditional Neapolitan and Roma (Rom) cuisines. Founded in 2014 by local associations La Kumpania and Chi rom e… chi no, the restaurant aims to provide economic independence and a sense of community for Neapolitan and Roma women. Despite facing discrimination, Chiku has gained national and international recognition and serves as a social hub. The restaurant respects both culinary traditions while innovating dishes like Kompagnia Moussaka. The article highlights the positive impact Chiku has on the local women, offering them a sense of independence and pride in their work.

Meal of the Week: Jewish holiday favourite from Italy Erbazzone

14 Apr 2023  |  euronews
Erbazzone, a savoury herbal pie from northern Italy, is highlighted as a dish with Jewish roots, particularly from the Sephardic Jewish community who settled in Italy during the 1490s. The pie, common in Emilia-Romagna and northern Tuscany, has evolved over time, incorporating local ingredients like Parmigiano Reggiano. The recipe provided caters to various dietary needs and includes instructions for making both the dough and the filling, which consists of leafy greens, onion, garlic, cheese, and olive oil.

Naples street art becomes battleground for parents seeking justice for children killed by police, mafia

05 Apr 2023  |  euronews
In Naples, parents whose children have been killed by police or the local mafia, known as the Camorra, are using street art as a form of protest and a call for justice. Murals depicting the deceased children have sparked controversy, with some arguing they glorify individuals tied to criminal activities. The article focuses on the case of Ugo Russo, a 15-year-old boy killed by a policeman after threatening him with a toy gun. Ugo's family created a mural to demand truth and justice, facing opposition from the city government which ordered its removal. The piece also touches on the broader issue of youth unemployment in Campania, which is one of the highest in Europe, and the systemic problems leading to children's involvement in crime. The journalist, Savin Mattozzi, provides insights from families affected by mafia violence and the community's struggle to address the root causes of youth criminality.

Poland's Jewish community mobilises to help Ukrainian refugees

30 Mar 2023  |  euronews
The article by Savin Mattozzi focuses on the response of Poland's Jewish community to the influx of refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine. Alina Sobczak, a pediatric emergency doctor in Krakow, immediately offered her home to host refugees when asked, eventually taking in 17 people. The article recounts Sobczak's family history of displacement and how it has influenced her willingness to help. Jonathan Ornstein, the executive director of the Jewish Community Center of Krakow, has also been proactive in assisting refugees by turning the center into a donation and information hub. The article touches on the Polish government's criticized response to refugees from non-European countries and the fear among Poles that they might also have to flee due to Russian threats. Sobczak's house remains open to refugees, but she harbors concerns about the future and the possibility of having to seek refuge herself.

Italy's Rave Community Rises Up Against New Anti-Gathering Law

06 Mar 2023  |  euronews
Italy's Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni has enacted a law that criminalizes unauthorized gatherings, targeting rave parties and potentially other forms of expression. This has sparked protests, particularly in Naples, where thousands rallied against what they see as an infringement on their freedom. The law imposes heavy fines and prison sentences for participants and organizers of such events. Critics, including human rights organizations like Article 19, argue that the law could be used to suppress anti-government demonstrations and target leftist community centers. Despite assurances from Meloni that the law will not target protests, there is skepticism among political opponents and activists. The law awaits Senate approval, but the rave community and its supporters are already mobilizing in resistance.

The hidden mosques of Naples

13 Jun 2022  |  Hyphen
In Naples, a city with a growing Muslim population, the lack of a central mosque has led to the emergence of informal places of worship in diverse locations such as former garages and abandoned warehouses. The article highlights the experiences of the Muslim community, particularly during large gatherings like Eid al-Fitr, and the challenges they face in establishing official places of worship due to bureaucratic hurdles. It also touches on the economic conditions of Naples and the integration of Muslim immigrants into the local culture. The Islamic Federation of Campania and the Bangladeshi Islamic Cultural Association are mentioned as key organizations within the Muslim community. The piece reflects on the changing demographics and the adaptation of the Muslim community within the Neapolitan context.

A photoessay on the refugee crisis on the Polish-Ukrainian border.

The Femminielli of Naples

24 Feb 2022  |  Are We Europe
The article explores the cultural traditions and struggles of the femminielli, a historic third-gender community in Naples, Italy. The femminielli, who do not conform to traditional gender identities, have been part of Neapolitan society for centuries, often seen as possessing spiritual powers and bringing good fortune. The article describes the figliata, an ancient fertility ceremony, and the pilgrimage to the Montevergine Sanctuary, highlighting the community's deep-rooted history. Despite their cultural significance, femminielli face discrimination and violence, with limited employment opportunities often pushing them into sex work. The article also touches on the proposed 'Ddl Zan' law aimed at protecting LGBTQ+ rights, which faces opposition from right-wing parties. The resilience of the femminielli is emphasized, as they continue to fight for their rights and recognition in society.

A photoessay for Swiss TV-radio RSI on Naples presepi makers and their struggles during the coronavirus pandemic.

A photoessay for Swiss TV-Radio RSI about young Afro-Italians getting Italian citizenship.

Witness historic Day of the Dead rituals in Naples, Italy

11 May 2021  |  National Geographic
The article explores the unique burial customs in Naples, Italy, particularly during the All Souls Day observance, which extends to about a week and a half of rituals. It describes the process where the deceased are initially buried in temporary wooden caskets and, after five years, are exhumed, cleaned, and wrapped in a mummification process before being placed in family tombs. The article also touches on the local tradition of adopting unclaimed bodies and the offering of torrone dei morti, a nougat-like candy, to the dead. Aldo Colucciello, a social anthropologist, comments on the Neapolitans' acceptance of death due to the constant presence of Mt. Vesuvius and encourages visitors to approach the cemeteries with humility. The Fontanelle cemetery, in particular, has become a tourist attraction with tours available in multiple languages.

In Naples, Muslim families struggle to bury coronavirus victims

17 Feb 2021  |  Al Jazeera
In Naples, Italy, the lack of a Muslim cemetery has posed significant challenges for the local Muslim community, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. Ahmed Aden Mohamed's experience highlights the difficulties faced when his mother passed away, as he had to choose between cremation, which is forbidden in Islam, and burial in a distant Muslim cemetery. Imam Cozzolino of the Islamic Federation of Campania emphasized the essential right to burial within one's region, a right hindered by the pandemic's travel restrictions. Efforts to establish a Muslim cemetery in Naples have been delayed and complicated by financial constraints and bureaucratic hurdles. The city's financial crisis has left the responsibility of funding the cemetery's construction to the Muslim community, which is largely composed of low-paid workers. The article illustrates the additional grief and challenges faced by Muslim families during the pandemic due to the absence of a local cemetery that adheres to Islamic burial practices.

Naples' Bassi: Living Between Public and Private Spaces

20 Nov 2020  |  City Monitor
The article explores the living conditions in Naples' historic neighbourhoods, focusing on the small street-level apartments known as 'bassi'. These cramped spaces, which originated in medieval times, are home to the city's poor and working-class, and increasingly, to immigrants from Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Central Africa. The article highlights how residents, like Alberto Albinni and Brinoy Fernando, adapt to the challenges of living in such confined spaces, including issues of humidity, ventilation, and lack of privacy. The coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated these problems, but residents have responded with creativity, often extending their living spaces into the streets, blurring the lines between public and private life. Marina Brancato, an anthropology professor, provides insight into the cultural significance of bassi in the urban landscape of Southern Italy.

‘Sicilians have affinity for the Islamic world in their DNA’

13 May 2019  |  Al Jazeera
The article discusses the historical and cultural significance of Islamic influence in Sicily, particularly in its capital, Palermo. It highlights the region's past as a Muslim stronghold and how this heritage has contributed to a more welcoming attitude towards Muslim immigrants today. The piece features insights from local Imams, a travel agency worker, and an Arabic language professor, all of whom reflect on the integration and acceptance of Muslims in Palermo. The article contrasts this with the rest of Italy, where there have been attacks against immigrants and anti-immigrant policies by politicians like Matteo Salvini. Palermo's mayor, Leoluca Orlando, is noted for his rejection of such policies and his view of Palermo as a city with a Mediterranean identity that is inherently multicultural and hospitable.

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