The representations of adoption at date have been little investigated. The deepening of this topic would be relevant as it could provide useful implications for intervention to implement a culture of hospitality. Therefore, exploring how adoption is seen and perceived by the adult population is an important step in promoting a context able to welcome and support adoptive children and their families. To this aim, 265 subjects were involved, and filled in a self-report ques-tionnaire containing the semantic differential to investigate the attitude compo-nent of the representation concerning adoption. In particular we explore the emotions connected to adoption and the comparison between the representation of parent and adoptive parent, and between the child and the adoptive child. Results show a positive attitude as participants tend to associate positive emotions to adoption. It also turned out a discrepancy between the representation of "child" and "adoptive child", in the direction of the disadvantage of the latter, while a tendentially positive vision of adoptive parents emerged, perceived as more conciliatory and open to the social context than biological parents. The results are discussed in terms of implication for practise.
Keywords: Representation, adoptive parent, adoptive child, social context, semantic differential.