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Abstract disponibile solo in lingua inglese
This paper seeks to explore some of the conceptual aspects of the current Italian debate on constitutional reform. It sets out by briefly reconstructing historical precedents, which highlight the singularity of the Italian situation: two distinctive features are the impossibility of addressing reform in parliament and what amounts, de facto, to contextual modification of the existing constitution. Today the unresolved problems of the past are rearing their ugly heads yet again. This time round, they have appeared all together and are further exacerbated by the transformations that have already taken place. The author explores three aspects in particular: how the constitution may be revised (through a modification of article 138 or the election of a constituent assembly); the limits placed on revision of the constitution; and how federalist reform of the state might really alter the characteristics of the Republic.