Thursday, January 18, 2024

Donne della Costituente – The Woman of the Constituent or Constitutional Assembly

Le Donne delle Costituente in Parco Sant' Agostino (Bergamo) Le Donne delle Costituente in Parco Sant' Agostino (Bergamo) Le donne delle Costituente - Adele Bei - a tree named in her honor
A memorial plaque in Parco Sant'Agostino Bergamo commemorating the women of the Constitutional Assembly. And, a tree dedicated to Adele Bei, one of the members.

On June 2, 1946, Italians were called upon to choose between the Monarchy and the Republic and to elect their representatives to the Constituent Assembly. There were 21 women elected, out of a total of 556 deputies. None were from Bergamo.

To remember this event, 21 trees in Parco Sant’Agostino in Bergamo were named after the 21 women elected to the Constituent Assembly on 2 June 1946. Also, an informational plaque was placed at the entrances to the park. The recognition and gesture requested by the Women's Council on the 75th anniversary of the Constitution of the Italian Republic.

A word about the phrase donne costituente is read as “woman of the constituent assembly”. Some terminology:

A note about the design. There are two colored ribbons weaving through the images, red and green. The ribbons seem to connect some of the women but not all. As far as we can tell, the red ribbon represents ‘approximately’ the Italian Communist Party and the green ribbon the Christian Democracy Party. Both parties no longer exist but were powerful forces at the time of the referendum on the monarchy. Perhaps a better way to think about it is that more than associating people, the ribbons are meant to call out (and was pointed out in the city hall web site): that they all were opposed to fascism.

  • Italian: “Molto diverse tra loro per età, cultura, professione, provengono tutte da precedenti esperienze di impegno sociale e politico, caratterizzato dall'opposizione al fascismo; in molti casi sono state attive nella Resistenza.”
  • English: Very different from each other in age, culture, profession, they all come from previous experiences of social and political commitment, characterized by opposition to fascism; in many cases they were active in the Resistance.

The 21 women are:

Adele Bei (Cantiano, 4 maggio 1904 - Roma, 15 ottobre 1976)
Bianca Bianchi (Vicchio di Mugello, 31 luglio 1914 - 9 luglio 2000)
Laura Bianchini (Castenedolo, 23 agosto 1903- Roma il 27 settembre 1983)
Elisabetta Conci (Trento, 23 marzo 1895 - Mollaro in Valle di Non, 1 novembre 1965)
Filomena Delli Castelli (Cittä Sant'Angelo, 28 settembre 1916 - 22 dicembre 2010)
Maria De Unterrichter (Ossana (Tn), 20 agosto 1902 - 27 dicembre 1975)
Maria Federici nata Anna Maria Agamben (Aquila, 19 settembre 1899 - 28 luglio 1984)

Nadia Gallico Spano (Tunisi, 2 giugno 1916 - Roma, 19 gennaio 2006)
Angela Gotelli (Albareto, 28 febbraio 1905 - 21 novembre 1996)
Angela Guidi (Roma 31 Ottobre 1896 - 11 lugiio 1991)
Nilde lotti (Reggio Emilia, 10 Aprile 1920 - Roma, 4 Dicembre 1999)
Teresa Mattei (Genova, 1 Febbraio 1921 - Usigliano, 12 Marzo 2013)
Lina Merlin (Pozzonovo, 15 Ottobre 1887 - Padova, 16 Agosto 1979)
Angiola Minella (Torino, 3 Febbraio 1920 - Genova, 12 Marzo 1988)

Rita Montagnana (Torino, 6 gennaio 1895 — Roma, 18 luglio 1979)
Maria Nicotra (Catania, 6 luglio 1913 — Padova, 14 luglio 2007)
Teresa Noce (Torino, 29 luglio 1900 — Bologna, 22 gennaio 1980)
Ottavia Penna (Caltagirone, 12 aprile 1907 — Caltagirone, 2 dicembre 1986)
Elettra Pollastrini (Rieti, 15 luglio 1908 - Rieti, 2 febbraio 1990)
Maria Maddalena Rossi (Codevilla, 29 settembre 1906 — Milano, 19 settembre 1995)
Vittoria Titomanlio (Barletta, 22 aprile 1899 — Napoli, 28 dicembre 1988)

 Le Donne delle Costituente in Parco Sant' Agostino (Bergamo) Le donne delle Costituente - Teresa Mattei - a tree named in her honor 
A memorial plaque in Parco Sant'Agostino Bergamo commemorating the women of the Constitutional Assembly. And, a tree dedicated to Teresa Mattei, one of the members.

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