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A Useless Subject?

Teaching Civic Education in Italy from the School Programs of 1958 to the Present Day

Paolo Bianchini and Maria Cristina Morandini

Civic education has always been an ancillary subject in the Italian school system. Introduced at the end of the 1950s as a sort of appendage to the history programs, it has recently been subject to multiple reforms although little or nothing has changed in reality. The analysis of a sample of civic education textbooks in use in schools explains some reasons for this breakdown. Even though they apply the new legislation, these textbooks retain the most blatant defect of civic education in the Western world—the lack of a clear and convincing model of the citizen.