The grass roads. This is how they called the “tratturi”, that is to say the transhumance routes ploughed for centuries by sheep and men in search of pasture and work.
The transhumance has also marked the history of Emilia-Romagna, sheep and men have moved for centuries from the Apennine hills of Emilia-Romagna to the lower valleys, moreover in different directions: from the Reggio Emilia, Modena and Bologna Apennines towards the Polesine and the plains in the Po Delta between Ravenna and Veneto, or from the Casentino towards the Maremma plains.
Shepherds are the first migrants, led by necessity to cross lands “not theirs” and therefore to negotiate for that passage, to propose exchanges and trades. As for every migration, also transhumance has produced social changes and the birth also of new opportunities for those different and distant territories that it has been able to put in contact with each other. Transhumance has united mountains and plains for centuries, has made them known, has produced exchanges, the need to find solutions to sometimes opposite needs, to create exchanges between people, work and therefore culture.
Over time, transhumant shepherds in Emilia-Romagna have changed into breeders and in the same areas there are now many young people who are recovering and innovating local microeconomies thanks to sheep farming.
Moderator: Laura Giorgi, journalist and author of “Where the grass grows” research.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
Event languages: IT