Some reflections on the issues of racism and fear of stranger and novelty are made. These behaviors are analyzed from the viewpoints of psychoanalysis (e.g., with the concepts of projection and identification with the aggressor), ethno- psychoanalysis, and sociology. The author also recounts some aspects of her family history, when during World War Two was living under Italian occupation and, later, German occupation, and after 1947 belonged to a Slovenian ethnic minority in Trieste. (This paper, with the original title "Accepting or rejecting the other: Psychopathologies of the borders", was presented on March 14, 2011, at a series of seminars titled "On the road", organized by Stefano Benni and Alessandro Castellari at the Pluriversità dell’Immaginazione "Grazia Cherchi" of Bologna, Italy).
Keywords: Racism, Nazism, projection, ethnic conflict, fear of stranger