Mamma RAI: Italians' Love-Hate Relationship with Public TV

Oct 10, 2022 414

BY: Francesco Dama

“RAI, Italian Radiotelevision, begins its regular broadcasting television service today.”

It’s Sunday, the 3rd of January, 1954 and Italians witness the birth of their national TV service…or rather, some of them do. Those who actually see the historical moment are very few: the cost of TV appliances is massively prohibitive. 

To overcome the problem, our proverbial inventiveness turns watching TV into a social activity: bars and friends’ houses with a TV set become meeting points for whole neighborhoods. 

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