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27-31 August 2019
Poznań, Poland
Europe/Warsaw timezone
programme last update: 23 August 2019
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Contribution Paper

Poznań, Poland - Morasko Kampus, room: 3.129

Cultural exchanges: how to “breathe” and “touch” cultures in schools.


  • Prof. Giovanna GUSLINI

Primary authors


How to prepare the ground for socio-cultural anthropology in schools? How to translate, in Italy, the experience of years in various countries of the world both in the field of anthropological research and education? After returning to Italy and starting around the year 2000 my work in a public educational office, there were for me two major challenges: both were aimed at showing that intercultural activities did not concern only foreigners, but also the whole school and territory. Above all the monocultural environments, touched by globalization, seemed unprepared to relate to others and needed a greater opening. Many schools were therefore involved: 1) in cultural exchanges and twinning with European schools, but also Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, African, American, Australian…, promoting the real and virtual mobility of students, teachers, principals and decision makers in the educational field. 2) in the first official school courses in Italy of Chinese, Japanese and Arabic culture and language, which were chosen by hundreds of students in secondary public institutes, also with events open to the community (exhibitions, films, lectures, cooking demonstrations...). These interdisciplinary projects were initially primarily optional, often extra-curricular, but soon they have become part of the curriculum in many schools at all levels, with the support of universities, embassies, associations, policy makers and various institutions. These networks, indirectly, helped a lot in promoting intercultural skills and a deeper knowledge of cultures through experience. Despite these efforts, after twenty years, I keep asking myself: why does anthropology still remain invisible?