between 1950 and 1970, a vast number of southern Italians looked for better work and living conditions in the northern part of the country. The internal migration often turned out to be a traumatic experience owing to the hostile attitude of the northern Italian community. The newcomers were generally perceived as different, i.e. culturally, socially and ethically "underdeveloped". As a result many southern children, in primary school, were referred to special education and thus discriminated against. On the other hand, the migrant population played an active role in the "modernization" of the country. The Author analyses the psychiatric discourse that supported the selection and PhD candidate, Università di Reading (UK).
Keywords: Migrazioni interne, scuola elementare, classi differenziali, bambini meridionali