Abstract

Referring to the role played by the blues in the United States, psychoanalyst Stephen Diggs suggests: “there are two stories of America: one is conscious and economic; the other is unconscious and alchemical” (Diggs 1997, 26). This article moves from two separate perspectives: one inspired by the psychological interpretation of the effects of the “blues” on contemporary societies, and another one anchored to the current debate among historians about music and international relations. We will use these two separate categories to investigate the role played by Bruce Springsteen as an American “sound ambassador”—of course a “Born in the U.S.A.” Ambassador—outside the US, particularly in Italy and in the Mediterranean area. Inspired by Darkness on the Edge of Town's topics, this article will finally analyze Springsteen's complex relationship with the main Italian political cultures—Atlanticist, Catholic, and Socialist—in order to highlight the ambivalent qualities of Springsteen's Italian bonds, which shape a sort of “darkness” in his Italian epic

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