If you have lived in cities with an ethnic population that arrived from the mid-1800’s to early 1900’s then you have encountered the Italian language and culture. Industries heavily populated by Italian immigrants include stone masonry (the Lincoln Memorial was carved by the Piccirilli Brothers), canal construction, agriculture, the arts, and naturally foods and restaurants. Today although most of these industries use English as the common language the traditional Italian terms remain for music, for architectural features and for food preparations. Lear Italian and you will learn more about the country in which we live.
Italian is still spoken in some established Little Italy locales from San Francisco through Chicago, Cleveland, to New York City – just a way to keep up traditions and family memories. A similar situation is found throughout the Americas from Canada south to Argentina where there is a large Italian-American (in the broader sense of American) population. But where is a knowledge of the language crucial to everyday interactions? Throughout the world there are over 60 million people who use Italian as their preferred language of choice: Italy, San Marino, Switzerland, Vatican City, and areas along the Adriatic that were once ruled by Italians.
A bit more about these Italo-phonic geographies is given here: Italian official language