Dr. Paul Arpaia, a faculty member in the History Department, has been selected to join the leadership of a national peace organization.
Arpaia will serve on the steering committee of September Eleventh Families for Peaceful Tomorrows, an organization that family members of those killed in the September 11, 2001, attacks founded in 2002 to turn their grief into action for peace.
“After the loss of my cousin, Captain Kathy Mazza of the Port Authority Police of New York and New Jersey, I discovered Peaceful Tomorrows in 2010,” Arpaia said. “This discovery followed a long search for an appropriate way to dedicate my life to commemorating my cousin, who had done so much to help the disadvantaged of all nations and creeds, first as an emergency-room nurse and then as a policewoman.”
Peaceful Tomorrows promotes dialogue on alternatives to war, while educating on issues of war, peace, and underlying causes of terrorism. The group offers support and fellowship to others seeking nonviolent responses to terrorism.
Peaceful Tomorrows calls attention to threats to civil liberties, human rights, and other American freedoms as a consequence of war, according to Arpaia. It advocates a multilateral, collaborative effort to bring those responsible for the September 11 attacks to justice in accordance with the principles of international law.
It also demands ongoing investigations into the events leading up to September 11, including exhaustive examinations of U.S. foreign policies and national security failures.
The seven-member steering committee is the executive body of Peaceful Tomorrows. Arpaia brings to the group his expertise in history and his willingness to engage in advancing the cause of peace.
In addition to contributing to the oversight and coordination of the organization, he will serve as a spokesperson on issues relating to the Rule of Law and the protection of civil liberties, especially ones targeting Muslim-American communities.
Peaceful Tomorrows, based in New York City, is planning a series of special national and international events for this coming September that will commemorate those lost in the attacks and the subsequent bloodshed that resulted.
Arpaia was the winner of the Rome Prize in Modern Italian Studies at the American Academy in Rome for 2007–2008. He is only the second IUP faculty member to be selected for this honor. (See his dispatches to IUP Magazine throughout his year at the academy: “Report from Rome,” Fall 2007, Winter 2008, Spring 2008, and Summer 2008.)
He is a fellow at the academy and a member of its Council of Fellows for the 2010–2012 term.
Since 1999, he has been the editor of H-Italy, one of many networks that make up H-Net: Humanities and Social Sciences OnLine. H-Italy’s 1,000 members represent more than 450 colleges, universities and cultural institutions in thirty countries around the world. Arpaia also serves on its advisory board.
Arpaia has a B.A. in history and French from Washington & Lee University. He earned his M.A. in modern European history at Georgetown University and subsequently won a three-year fellowship to specialize in modern Italian history at the Scuola Normale Superiore in Italy.
He then returned to Georgetown University, where he earned his Ph.D. in modern European history.
Arpaia teaches German and Italian history at IUP and publishes on nineteenth- and twentieth-century Italian culture and politics.
He is in the process of completing a biography of Luigi Federzoni, a cofounder of the Italian Nationalist Party and a leading fascist political and cultural figure.