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MATTHEW John Cabot’s vessel: informing, exploring, excelling.


APRIL 7, 2010

JCU celebrates founding date of Rome By Christianne Alvarez PR Officer


In Loving Memory of Connor Redd (1987-2010) The Smile Of A Champion


On Thursday, March 31st , a visiting student from St. Mary’s College in California passed away. He died from falling off the balcony of his apartment. His parents were notified immediately and a memorial was held on Wednesday, April 7th in the Aula Magna. Students and faculty gathered together to honor and remember Connor.He made a big impact on our school community. The Matthew staff would like to give our condolences to all the Redd family and friends.

Some months ago, professors, Eric DeSena, Luca Larpi, Alessandra Grego, and Stephen Colatrella, found themselves discussing the birth date of Rome and ways they could celebrate this occasion with an event at JCU. The professors then asked themselves: why not commemorate the anniversary of the Visigoth sack of Rome of 410. The sack took place under the Visigoth king, Alaric, at a time when the Roman Empire was struggling for survival.  It no longer safe or as strong as it had been in previous centuries. The sack by the Visigoths would have centuries-long repercussions, as they were outsiders.  Professor Yawn, professor of Art History said that the sack was, in fact, a wake up call a lot like the disaster that hit the United States on 9.11. The sacking of the Roman event will include lectures on the subject of decline and fall, given by primarily JCU professors. It will also offer a sense of how Romans lived at the time: their ancient roman recipes, fashion, and art.  There will also be music, fresco/mosaic artists, and replicas of ancient roman jewelry.  Charles Winthrop, a JCU student, will be on hand to teach Latin and Gothic phrases to those in attendance and a barbarian-Roman photo contest will also take place. l

Sit back and relax in Piazza Navona on 10

Do you like your gelato? Check out our Skip review on 7




STAFF Advisor: Judy Bachrach

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Students Dance Through JCU By Danni Rovet Staff Writer Gente de Barrio shakes it up in G.K.G.1 every Monday around 8 pm. “We’re Latinos,” says Karen Castillo, choreographer and founder of the group, “so practice doesn’t always start on time.” The group was formed last semester. “I was on the dance team back home and wanted to perform for the talent show,” says Karen. She decided to get together with a group of like-minded friends and the Gente de Barrio quintet was born. The group dances to the samba, bachata and reggaeton, and their performances always include a salsa piece. They keep it real while performing in street clothes, representing the Latin American community at JCU. Tryouts are held at the beginning of each semester and a basic knowledge of salsa is preferred, but most of the members do not have an extensive background in dance. “Anyone can join, but you’ve got to have rhythm,” says Karen. Although the date of their next performance is not yet specified, the performance will be at the end of the semester during a carnival organized by the Multicultural Club. Gente de Barrio encourages all members of the JCU community to attend. “Students of any nationality are welcome,” says Karen. “The bigger the performance, the more fun and the more you can do with the dance,” she added. l

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Copy Editors: Amanda Hildebrand, Liz Horne, Elizabeth Maragioglio,Valerio Taverna

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Contact Information: JCU Student Newspaper Club c/o Student Services John Cabot University Via Della Lungara 223 Rome Italy 00165

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Multicultural Club Facebook Group

Members of Gente de Barrio, a latino dance group, performs salsa and other dances.

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The Matthew is the student-written and student-managed, nonprofit newspaper of John Cabot University. The Matthew is published while classes are in session during fall and spring semesters. No part thereof may be reproduced in any form, in whole or in part, without the consent of the managing editor. Op-eds and Letters to the Editor may be submitted for publication by e-mail to Newspaper officers do not have office hours, but can be reached at any time by writing to the address above.




De Michelis Shows Students a Different Rome By Bella hUyGens Staff Writer A great professor can be hard to find. However, the Art History department is home to one such professor: Antonella De Michelis. A member of JCU’s staff since 2007, De Michelis specializes in papal urbanism of early 16th century Rome and Garden City planning of the 1920s. De Michelis is truly one of the most valuable assets that the Art History department has in its arsenal). Originally from Vancouver, Canada, De Michelis has made Rome her home for over ten years. Prior to coming to Rome, De Michelis earned her degrees from the University of British Colombia, Canada and the Courtland Institute of Art in London. Academics first brought De Michelis to Rome .“I had written my undergraduate thesis on the restoration of the chapel [Sistine Chapel],” she said, “and after spending hours in dark lecture halls looking at slides and pouring over books, I couldn’t wait to see it in person.” De Michelis credits former professors for fostering her interest in Art History and architecture. And she certainly does



STAND members were recently guests to the Noruz celebration hosted by ACAFI- Associazione Culturale deli Afghani in Italia. Nowruz celebrates the start of the Persian year, and STAND helped over 50 refugees attend the festivities, which included lectures, food, and dancing. The 500 people filtering in and out of the Assembly hall reflected the large Afghan community living in Italy, specifically Rome, and the majority homeless. In the area notoriously called the “Afghan Hole” by Via Ostiense, refugees find that Rome is a hard city to leave and equally difficult to live in. The terms of the Dublin Convention II make it very difficult for refugees to leave as they wait for requests of asylum to be processed. Jobs are almost impossible to find, as no one wants to employ a homeless person; a factor that only contributes to the difficulty in leaving the country. ACAFI is one of many organizations in Rome that provide services to a specific community in need. To learn how you can involved, email STAND at

the same in her own classes. Her excitement for seeing art first- hand enrich her students’ learning experience. She exudes a seemingly endless enthusiasm and passion for the structures and works of art to which she introduces her students. One of her goals in teaching, she says, is to “take the mystery out of architecture and make it accessible.” The city itself is De Michelis’s classroom and in her opinion, “It honestly doesn’t get better than Rome. In a short walk you can find examples from any time period – from ancient to contemporary – all co-existing and sharing the urban landscape. What’s not to love?” Not only does De Michelis want her students to become familiar with the art and architecture of Rome, but she also wants to help her students to have a clear grasp of Rome itself – “It’s important for me that students get to know the city and make it their own.” De Michelis’s one piece of advice to JCU’s students is, “Make the most of what the city has to offer.” De Michelis’s carrer in Art History does not restrict her to the classroom, but rather broadens her scopes of interest. In

her spare time she enjoys traveling to any city that can boast great food and architecture and, together with her brother, she served as an advisor to the special effects team for the film Angels & Demons. De Michelis describes her experience as as a special effects advisor as “An incredible creative process.” Needless to say, if presented with the opportunity to take a class with Professor De Michelis one should take it without hesitation. l

Photo CoUrtsey oF ProFessor antonella De MiChelis

Have an opinion about something? Win 500 euro for your op-ed piece! The Albert Walker Fuller Prize will be awarded to a faculty or staff member or student for outstanding writing in an opinion piece Submissions should be 500 words and sent to Professor Judy Bachrach at 3



Caravaggio Exhibition Reveals Artist’s Life By Poppy Cotterell Staff Writer The Caravaggio exhibition at the Scuderie del Quirinale hosts an impressive body of the great Baroque artist’s work, spanning the whole of his fifteen-year career. All of the works have been authenticated as genuine: a revolutionary achievement since many other paintings been attributed to Caravaggio in the past twenty years are not necessarily considered genuine. The Scuderie del Quirinale has chosen to divide the works into three different sections of Caravaggio’s career. His early phase is titled “the youthful phase”; his middle period is called “the success phase” and finally, his latest phase which is called “the Escape”. These phases are color-coded with green, red and grey walls. The phases correspond to Caravaggio’s colorful life as a murdered, a homosexual, a painter who painted prostitutes to represent the Virgin Mary to the annoyance of his clerical patrons, in short an artistic genius. Caravaggio’s tones are so polished that they can seem superficial . This is best demonstrated in “The Uffizi Bacchus” 1595 where the colors are bright and the tones glossy and brassy. The lazy Bacchus seems vain and lordly, sitting across from us with his elaborate headdress, as though nothing will move him to get up. On the other hand, “Basket of fruit” (1597) is tactile and sensual, capturing the shine of the grapes, the softness of the leaves

The Environmental Club is hosting the CELEBRATION of the EARTH on THURSDAY APRIL 22nd - EARTH DAY! This will be your opportunity to show off you EARTH INSPIRED TALENTS! TALENT SHOW- open to all students, alumni and professors --Please send an e-mail to Enivronment@ by APRIL 16th if you are interested in showcasing your talent. ART COMPETITION- There will be prizes for the most creative Earth inspired art. -PHOTOGRAPHY, DRAWING, PAINTINGS, SCULPTURES/ ANY and ALL ART FORMS are welcome! HOW TO ENTER: Please send an e-mail of interest and the name or idea of the piece by April 16th with your name attached.. This is your opportunity to show off your beautiful landscape pictures.

and the firmness of the apples. The problem with the Caravaggio Exhibition is the lighting. It is unfortunate as the lights shine straight onto the paintings, showing the texture of the decaying paint and preventing us from seeing the texture of the fruit itself from many angles. The final section of the Caravaggio exhibition is “The Escape” which exhibits works from 1606-1610. The background color of the walls is grey, thus reflecting the suffering that Caravaggio experienced in his last years when he was trying to escape after killing Ranuccio Tomassoni in Rome in the year of 1606. Both “The Adoration of the Shepherds” and “The Annunciation of Nancy” are exhibited in the kind of bold, solitary maner that gives them special emphasis and importance. The palette and interpretation of the subjects are indicative of Caravaggio’s sense of guilt and imminent doom. Even the subject matter reflects these feelings of depression: “David with the Head of Goliath” 1610 hangs near A late version of “Supper at Emmaus”. The painting shows the young David with a sorrowful expression gazing on the severed head of the giant, which is in face a self-portriat of Caravaggio. In other words, Caravaggio offering his own severed head in a symbolic way as penance for his own homicidal actions.This was one of Caravaggio’s last paintings, which he executed for Cardinal Scipione Borghese, a great patron of the arts – who just happened to have the power to grant pardons. l

Come see...


performed by Drama Club April 14-16 8:00 pm Aulua Magna free admission refreshments will be served during a brief intermission 4



Middle Eastern Cafe Gelato Close to JCU Offers Students a Treat Hides in the Heart of the Roman Center Ah, Italy. The land of pizza, mozzarella, and, quite possibly the country’s best gift to the world: gelato. JCU students, when looking for an afternoon snack, are able to find a variety of rich flavors from several local gelato shops close by the school. With the winter slowly subsiding and a brilliant spring upon us, students are constantly on the prowl for the best gelato. Of the dozens in the Trastevere area, there are two gelato places that are particularly appealing. One, Blue Ice, is found near Santa Maria di Trastevere, just five minutes from JCU. And the other, Geleteria, is on the street behind Piazza Trilussa. Both are able to offer students a fulfilling after-class snack, in their distinct ways. Geleteria has by far the better tasting gelato. The gelato is home made from natural ingredients and is the richest and creamiest of the stores. However, you get what you pay for. Great taste comes with a slightly greater price: 1.50 euro will get you two scoops. On the other hand, its proximity to school (right on the way between the two campuses) and friendly service, combined with the great taste can make the extra money worth it. Even though it is further away from the school, Blue Ice is still well worth the walk. Although perhaps slightly less outstanding in taste than Gelateria, it still offers and pretty delicious gelato experience. The variety, however, is what makes Blue Ice stand out from the others. The closest thing to the Baskin Robins of gelato, one can find classic flavors like nutella as well as more exciting ones not offered by the other stores. l

By Diana C. nearhos Layout Editor Tucked in a side street off the corner of Campo dei Fiori sits La Pyramide, an authentic Middle Eastern café. The restaurant offers traditional fast food options such as kebab, sambusa, and baklava. The kebab sandwich just about overflows with seasoned meat, tomatoes, lettuce, and a couple of different sauces, which often drips onto your clothes. Sambusa is a triangular fried or baked shell with a savory filling, usually cheese, spinach, potatoes, or onion. Although typically thought of as a Greek dessert, baklava actually comes Turkey and tops off a meal to perfection. As in similar places where the food is typical, only a few tall bar chairs can be found inside the actual café. Customers typically eat standing at the counter or on the go, as the food is compact and easy to carry. The prices at La Pyramide will be just as welcome at just a couple of euros for most of the delicious options. And its location just over Ponte Sisto, next to Campo dei Fiori, makes it an easy destination for that hour lunch break between classes. l

Cook Yourself Something New

Basuc Chicken Soup

Recipe from Bella Huygens This soup is great if you have a cold, stomach problems or just a craving for something hot and simple. The broth can be used as a base for other soups, such as onion soup, cream of celery or asparagus soup, and many others. Traditionally, a whole hen would be used and it is of course possible to make it with a whole chicken. But to make it leaner and less fatty, skinless chicken breasts (with bones) are best. Any part of a chicken can be used – it just depends on personal preference and can easily be adapted. The vegetables are always the same. The amounts given here are not set in stone and also depend on personal preferences. Ingredients -2 chicken breasts with bone (skin removed); -4 carrots – peeled and ends cut off -1 small parsnip – peeled and ends cut off -2 small leeks – cleaned with root ends cut off and the first layer of thick green leaves removed -1 small onion – skin removed (can be cut in half) -Celery root – roughly half the size of a tennis ball, peeled

-White (or green) cabbage – use a wedge roughly the size of half a big grapefruit -2 potatoes peeled (optional) -Italian (aka flat) parsley -Dill - 5-6 Peppercorns -Whole Allspice (can do without) -1/2 tsp salt Directions 1. Put the chicken breasts at the bottom of the pot. 2. Add all the vegetables (except the last two) on top. 3. Cover with cold water, but just so the veggies stick out a bit and do not float around. 4. Add the peppercorns, allspice, and the salt (you can add more of each later. 5. Take a bunch of the flat parsley, tie it together with white thread and add. 6. Cook on low heat for about one hour. Make sure the soup does not boil over. Tip: Remove the onion as soon as the soup is ready




Galdiators Defeat AUR to End the Season By Jonathon Meyer Contributing Writer On St. Patrick’s Day, John Cabot University’s men’s soccer team competed against the American University of Rome in one of its most important games of the season. Held at the shadowy Centro Sportivo stadium at 21:00, the game featured intense competition between the two squads. JCU Coach Marco Sicilia said AUR had a “very good” team. Last term, when these two teams played each other, the score was 4-1 in JCU’s favor. But the game this semester was tight and scoreless through the first 20 minutes of play. There were several close calls in the opening half that kept the crowd of 100 on the edge of their seats, anticipating the first goal. Neither team scored until 25 minutes into the first half when JCU forward Lorenzo Bassetti took a quick shot that went past the goalkeeper and into the net. Lorenzo celebrated, taking off his jersey, and JCU fans stood to cheer the goal. In the second half, JCU stayed with the same game plan— using the 1-5-4 formation to pass the ball with “short passes” and get more scoring chances. Study abroad student Cory Larkin came into the game on the left side and used his speed to open up opportunities in the game. However, AUR continued to attack, and an AUR shot narrowly missed the JCU goal, bouncing off of the keeper’s goalpost and to the other side of the field. With 10 minutes left to play, Corey ran up the left wing with the ball, where he passed it to Sean Christie across the field. Christie dribbled around one AUR defender and entered the box. Another AUR defender narrowly missed tackling the ball


John Cabot won its final game, finishing 4-7 on the season.

away, but nimble Christie got his right foot on the ball before the opposing goalkeeper knocked it away. The JCU crowd cheered loudly for the goal as Christie pointed into the stands. It was a stirring moment, and not just for the player. The game finished at 2-0 in JCU’s favor. JCU men Gladiators brought their record to 3-3 this term and 4-7 for the season.

Candice Clark Helps Move John Cabot Forwards By Diana C. Nearhos Layout Editor


Clark’s intensity on the field serves her well at l’ultimo uomo.

John Cabot University’s women’s soccer team is moving up in the world, or at least the league. JCU has had one of its best years in a long time, ranking third at the end of the season, and the contributions from a few key players have made a large difference. Candice Clark, a study abroad student, has played a large role in this transition. An impactful player no matter where she is, Clark has started every game for her home team last semester and for JCU this semester. When she steps on the field, Clark brings it all. “She is definitely one who has been very committed,” said sophomore captain Alex Fernandez. Fifteen years ago, Clark joined her first soccer team – a recreation team in her hometown of Rockaway, Queens, NY. Before coming to JCU, she played for her home university of Connecticut College. Upon arriving in Rome, joined the team at JCU. Despite joining the team mid-season, Clark fell into place on the team quickly. She plays as “l’ultimo uomo,” meaning she is the last defenseman between the other team and the ut goal. “The team calls me ‘The Boxer’ because I am aggressive,” said Clark. This team as whole has played more aggressively this season, resulting in their hightest ranking. “I think I have helped the team prove to the rest of the league that we are not easily




Appreciation for the Arts Is Lost in Italy POPPY COTTERELL For centuries Italy was considered the pinnacle of cultural and aesthetic development. Giotto, Donatello, Raphael, Michelangelo, Caravaggio and Bernini; Italy has housed the greatest giants in history of art and was responsible for the emergence of the Renaissance and Baroque. It was here that Caravaggio revolutionized depicting light with his chiaro scuro technique, that Leonardo da Vinci used his scientific methods to convincingly depict how light modelled form. However, Italy has lost touch with its legacy of understanding light and how it affects our perception and even our mood. This curious failure is evident almost everywhere in Italy today. From restaurants to exhibitions, Italy falls short where lighting is concerned. When you go to the Uffizi in Florence, at certain times of day it is impossible to see Botticelli’s “Primavera” as the window on the opposite wall shines directly onto the panel, obscuring

our view. If you visit the current Caravaggio exhibition at the Scuderie del Quirinale, the artificial light shines straight onto the canvas of “Basket of Fruit” making it impossible to see what Caravaggio is depicting – and also masking his artistic genius. At the Sebastiano del Piombo exhibition in Piazza Venezia 2008, florescent lighting schemes change radically from room to room. Thus, the Renaissance exhibition has a strong nocturnal feel, disturbingly close to that of a nightclub. My point is simple: Italy has lost touch with the precious art being exhibited. Gallery and museum lighting has become self indulgent or just plain insensitive; a chance for curators to showcase their “modern approach” at the expense of the delicate work on display. Sometimes traditional art calls for traditional means. Centuries ago, Caravaggio and Sebastiano del Piombo would have been seen only by natural light or candlelight – so perhaps those florescent artificial lights that now bathe their paintings could be dimmed down

a little. Great art speaks loudly enough for itself. The insensitivity of crass lighting on display at Roman museums is also evident in everyday locations. Rome is often considered one of the most romantic cities in the world, offering beautiful views, refreshing fountains and delicious food-- all stereotypical ingredients for romance. And yet, try going the average trattoria for a night of enchantment. The lights are so garishly bright, the customer feels instantly exposed and startled out of her romantic mood. Gone are the shadows and subtleties that enhance pleasure: couples find themselves sitting upright, sobered and naked. Like fine art, people require sensitivity, indulgence, and understanding. It is a shame that the legacy of this understanding this has been lost in Italy. Poppy Cotterell is a study abroad student at JCU. She welcomes comments at newspaper@johncabot. edu.




Explore Rome: Piazza Navona By Jillian GUinta Staff Writer For those who seek variety in their days in Rome, the Piazza Navona is a perfect area. Although this lively piazza is always crowded, it is large enough so that the visitor never feels overwhelmed, nudged or crowded. During the day, the piazza attracts Romans as well as foreigners trickling in to visit the sites. Since it is only a couple of hundred meters from the bustling food and flower markets of the Campo de Fiori, this area hosts a lot of passerby, some of whom are finishing their morning errands while others are en route to other destinations. By night it becomes a fantastic panorama of live music, street vendors, and artists sketching passing clientele. But even if you are short on cash, Piazza Navona offers a warm and friendly nocturnal destination. There is plenty to do. Lots to see. You can simply watch and mingle, without ever opening your wallet. Fountains Piazza Navona boasts three stunning fountains and five additional monuments. The primary fountain, Bernini’s La Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi (the Fountain of the Four Rivers), is located at the heart of the Piazza, in front of the Church of Saint Agnes in Agony. The Fontana di Nettuno (Neptune Fountain) and the Fontana del Moro (Moor Fountain) flank the Quattro Fiumi respectively at the northern and southern ends. The Quattro Fiumi was featured in the well-known Dan Brown book, Angels and Demons, and depicts the four major rivers of the ancient world – the Nile, the Ganges, the Danube, and the Rio della Plata.

Church of Saint Agnes in Agony The Church of Saint Agnes in Agony was commissioned in 1652 by Pope Innocent X. It houses not only bright, beautiful frescoes, but also the skull of Saint Agnes. This saint was known as the Virgin Martyr. According to legend, Agnes, a native of the city of Rome, was to be executed after she refrused to marry the Prefect Sempronius’s son. Because Roman law did not permit the execution of virgins, Sempronius ordered that Agnes be stripped naked and dragged to a brothel. All those who tried to force themselves upon Saint Agnes were struck blind. When it came time to burn her at the stake, the wood would not catch fire. This gruesome, yet miraculous, event allowed Saint Agnes to gain recognition as a Catholic saint.

Dining Finding food, wine, and a good party is extremely easy in the Piazza Navona. The options directly on the piazza, though a beautiful experience, tend to be on the pricery sice, and the same experience can be enjoyed sitting on the many benches with a sandwich or gelato. Many very good but less touristy restaurants sit just outside the stadium style piazza – and are surprisingly reasonable. Some offer primi piatti from 5 to 10 euro, secondi and fresh seafood from 15 euro, and the house wine from 8 euro per liter. Among the best: Navona Notte and Ristorante Enoteca La Cuccagna, which both offer an intimate dining experience in an authentic Roman osteria.

Nightlife Whether you speak fluent Italian or just the basics, it is easy to find a bar suited to your desires. In the immediate area, Navona has bars frequented by Italian locals or crowds that offer a generous mix of nationalities. For those who prefer to dance all night long and party to a combination of popular Italian songs and American music, the Bloom nightclub is the place to spend the night. For a relaxed environment and a chance to talk to people from all over the world, head to Tapa Loca, a Spanish tapas restaurant with great sangria. This mellow pub, which serves dinner and later drinks, is a best bet for those hosting visitors to Roma. It has a fun atmosphere, but patrons do not need to shout to be heard.


The Matthew  

Issue April 7

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