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Presented By: Romance Languages & Literatures

This is What I live For: Italian Rapper Amir Issaa Book Launch

Vivo per questo

Amir Issaa Book Launch Poster Amir Issaa Book Launch Poster
Amir Issaa Book Launch Poster
Born and raised in Rome, in the neighborhood of Torpignattara, Amir is the son of an Egyptian immigrant father and an Italian mother. He initially approached hip-hop culture in the 1990s, first as a b-boy/breaker, and then as a writer for Roma’s graffiti crew The Riot Vandals. He is among the founders of the legendary Rome Zoo, a group made of Rome’s rap artists such as Colle Der Fomento, Cor Veleno, Flaminio Maphia, Piotta, and many more.

In June 2017, Amir published his first book, Vivo per questo (Chiarelettere). An autobiographical novel that has been well-received by Italian literary critics and was praised by Internazionale as one of the best books for young adults in 2017. Now in English translation, Amir will be presenting his book at the University of Michigan. The English translation is the culmination of a multi-year project undertaken by multiple advanced Italian classes across the US.

A free live performance by Amir will follow the book launch at Wayne State University. For more information see here.

For those interested, there will also be a Zoom workshop hosted by WSU in the morning from 10:30AM -12:10 PM. Please email Giulia Riccò ( for more information.

This event is co-sponsored by: The Consulate of Italy in Detroit, Wayne State University, Michigan State University, and the Language Resource Center at the University of Michigan.

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