Poverty in Southern Italy: From Rural Misery to Urban Exclusion
This paper analyses the characteristics and specificities of poverty in Southern Italy. Absolute poverty has dramatically diminished in Italy and in the South over the last few decades. The population sectors worst hit by poverty have also changed in terms of demographic and social composition, as also in occupational and regional distribution. The most important change concerns the disappearance of conditions of rural misery characterizing Southern Italy up to the 1950s. Nevertheless, this decidedly positive trend also has a downside in the persistence of relative poverty and its concentration in the southern regions. The article emphasizes the important role of the welfare system and social policies in fighting poverty. Today poverty in Southern Italy is essentially an urban phenomenon, the urban poor being marginal on the labour market while at the same time having limited access to welfare benefits.
Volume (Year): (2002)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
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