This essay looks into the trends and social dynamics that have affected and still affect the native population, especially the istro-venetian population of Istria, a territory that has always been an ethnically mixed area with a mobile border. In the recent past, that border determined the fate of the two autochthonous ethno-national components, altering their future. The Italian component outnumbered the Slav (Croat and Slovenian) population until the end of WW II, when Istria was still integral part of the wider region of Venezia-Giulia. After Tito’s Yugoslavia gained control over this area, the Italian community became a national minority unable to fit in the new social context, also because it was expected to serve as conveyor belt for Yugoslav socialism and populism. The study has no pretence of exhaustiveness; it intends to contribute to the dissemination of information on some distinctive traits and challenges that accompanied the changes in this border region. This survey may also provide some useful insights on the present situation. The most significant transformations of Istria in the last 50 years are also highlighted, with a special focus on the Italian component, considering it both as Italian community (of those who remained) and as Italian National Minority.