My favorite sight in Palermo was the Fountain of Shame. Its name comes from the nakedness of the statues, its location by a government building, which alludes to the corruption of the government, and the shameful neglect to another building next to it. Despite the supposed shame associated with the fountain, it is still gorgeous. I loved identifying the various statues of the gods through the intricate details representing symbols of the deities. We found Neptune, Ceres, Hercules, Bacchus, Apollo, and Diana for sure. Try to identify some gods yourself!
This idea of corruption and shame continued during our Addiopizzo tour that evening. We learned about the Mafia’s role in the city, including how they stole money intended for infrastructure, much to Northern Italy’s exasperation. Addiopizzo works to end another corrupt Mafia practice: the pizzo, a tax that establishes the Mafia’s authority over business owners. This organization thus works to educate people such as ourselves on the pizzo and other fights against the Mafia. The Piazza della Memoria was an appropriate stop, as it remembers those who have fought against the Mafia and been subsequently targeted.