Inclusion Through Political Participation, Trust from Shared Political Engagement: Children of Migrants and School Activism in Italy

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticle


This contribution presents the results of four researches with young migrants that took place in Italy between 2006 and 2014. The four research projects were concerned with the promotion of young people’s personal narratives to support a phenomenological description of their semantics of social participation. The researches cover a period characterised by economic crisis, the rise and fall of xenophobic political parties and a continuing debate around migration and inclusion in different social contexts. Data consists of young migrants’ narratives, promoted and collected in 62 focus group and 118 individual interviews. The discussion will introduce ‘school activism’ as the context of participation in political movements and campaigning of young migrants. School activism is an example and the context of the development of trusting relationships with peers, where positions of marginalisation are rejected and identities are negotiated and co-constructed around the person through dialogue. Participants’ narratives suggest that cultural essentialism can generate important problems of ineffective educational treatment of cultural identity. These problems can become particularly relevant during adolescence, an age in which the construction of identity may be seen as challenging. At the same time, young migrants and children of migrants’ narratives construct identities that through school activism position their authors at the center of rich networks of political participation and peer relationships.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1121-1136
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of International Migration and Integration
Issue number4
Early online date7 Jan 2019
Publication statusPublished - 9 Nov 2019


  • Categorical inequalities
  • Children of migrants
  • Italy
  • Narratives
  • School activism
  • Secondary education
  • Trust

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  • Activities

    • 5 Oral presentation
    • 1 Participating in a conference or workshop
    • 1 Invited talk

    Narratives of Exclusion, Narratives of Belonging

    Federico Farini (Speaker) & Angela Scollan (Speaker)

    19 Aug 201924 Aug 2019

    Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsOral presentationResearch

    Narratives of Refusal, Narratives of Engagement, Narratives of Organisation. School Activism As Citizenship-in-Practice for Young Refugees and Migrants in Italy

    Federico Farini (Speaker) & Angela Scollan (Speaker)

    Jul 2018

    Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsOral presentationResearch

    International Sociological Society (ISA) XIX World Congress of Sociology

    Federico Farini (Participant) & Angela; Scollan (Participant)

    15 Jul 2018

    Activity: Participating in or organising a conference or workshopParticipating in a conference or workshopResearch


    School activism. The meanings of political participation of young migrants in Italian Schools

    Federico Farini (Speaker) & Angela Scollan (Speaker)

    Aug 2017

    Activity: Academic Talks or PresentationsOral presentationResearch

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