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Lesson Transcript

Hello, and welcome to the Culture Class- Holidays in Italy Series at ItalianPod101.com. In this series, we’re exploring the traditions behind Italian holidays and observances. I’m Becky, and you're listening to Season 1 Lesson 6, Liberation Day.
Like in many European countries, the day marking the end of World War II is a public holiday in Italy. This day is observed in Italy on April 25, and is called Liberation Day. In fact, on April 25, 1945 most of Italy was liberated from Nazi domination and regained its independence.
In this lesson, we’ll see how this day is celebrated in Italy and learn about its significance.
Now, before we go into more detail, we’ve got a question for you- Do you know which famous American film director shot a movie about the liberation of Italy?
If you don't already know, you’ll find out a bit later. Keep listening.
The Anniversary of the Liberation is one of the most important civil holidays in Italy. On this day, Italy was liberated from twenty years of fascist dictatorship and from the German occupation. It was also the day that the Second World War ended. Like many other countries in the world, this war had a dramatic effect on Italy because it was fought on the streets of Italian cities everywhere.
The liberation of Italy happened because of the intervention of the British and American armies, which invaded Sicily in the summer of 1943 with the intention to move north, where German influence was stronger. The support of the Italian partisans was also extremely important as they rebelled against fascism and began to fight to liberate Italy from the Nazi regime.
Each year, on April 25, many demonstrations are held to commemorate the dead – those who died for the independence of Italy. The most notable demonstrations are observed in Rome at the Altar of the Fatherland, and the President of Italy also participates.
But, generally speaking, for most families today, April 25 is also a good opportunity to plan a trip, especially if the weather is good.
It’s said that chocolates, cigarettes and soap became symbols of freedom after the war. After the liberation, the American army began to distribute these three products on the streets; although these products are simple, they were very hard to find during the war years.
Now it's time to answer our quiz question-
Do you know which American director recently shot a movie about the liberation of Italy? The film is titled “Miracle at St. Anna” and was shot by Spike Lee. Some parts were filmed in Tuscany!
Well listeners, how was this lesson? Did you learn something new?
How did World War II end in your country?
Please leave a comment telling us at ItalianPod101.com!
See you next time!