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'Emergenza nomadi' : institutional continuities in Italian government policy towards the Romanies

Armillei, Riccardo 2014, 'Emergenza nomadi' : institutional continuities in Italian government policy towards the Romanies, Australian and New Zealand journal of European studies, vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 27-41.

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Title 'Emergenza nomadi' : institutional continuities in Italian government policy towards the Romanies
Author(s) Armillei, Riccardo
Journal name Australian and New Zealand journal of European studies
Volume number 6
Issue number 1
Start page 27
End page 41
Total pages 15
Publisher Contemporary European Studies Association of Australia
Place of publication Melbourne, Vic.
Publication date 2014
ISSN 1837-2147
Keyword(s) ‘Emergenza Nomadi'
Institutional Discrimination
Romani/'Gypsy' people
Summary The Romani peoples today occupy a marginalised position in Italian society. A small number of these peoples live in ‘camps’ in conditions of extreme decay and abandonment. In order to address this situation and to improve these peoples’ lives, the Italian government has recently decided to implement an ‘extraordinary intervention.’ In 2008, in continuity with previous centre-left governments, the Berlusconi right-wing coalition implemented the so called ‘Emergenza Nomadi’ (nomad emergency). The state of emergency aimed to solve an issue that had been already categorised in the 1970s as the ‘problema nomadi’ (nomads problem), and was now described and handled as a ‘natural disaster.’ Based on interviews with Romani individuals, institutional and Third Sector representatives, participant observation and a broad range of secondary sources, this article argues that the enactment of an extraordinary measure was both disproportionate to the real degree of threat, and perpetuated an institutional tradition of racism and control of the Romani peoples. It was not, as the declaration of an ‘emergency’ might imply, the result of a sudden, unexpected situation which required an immediate action. The ‘emergency’ and the premises for the implementation of a ‘state of exception’ were created by protracted institutional immobility and political vacuum.
Language eng
Field of Research 160803 Race and Ethnic Relations
1606 Political Science
2003 Language Studies
2103 Historical Studies
Socio Economic Objective 940111 Ethnicity
HERDC Research category C2.1 Other contribution to refereed journal
ERA Research output type X Not reportable
Copyright notice ©2014, Australian and New Zealand Journal of European Studies
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