What an Italian Jesuit (and Georgetown’s ‘second founder’) thought about democracy and religious freedom in America

Jun 03, 2021 431

BY: Michael E. Engh

In 1818, Giovanni Grassi, S.J., published the first of three Italian-language editions of a pamphlet of his observations of the United States. Georgetown’s Second Founder presents the first English translation of his insights based on his seven years of residence in Washington.

This college administrator shared with Italian readers his observations and assessments of the young republic to explain various novel concepts, such as democratic self-government and freedom of religion. Father Grassi believed the Stati Uniti provided abundant opportunities for enterprising immigrants from the Italian peninsula to achieve financial success. 

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SOURCE: https://www.americamagazine.org/

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