Critical medical anthropology explores multiple domains of healing practices, suffering, as well as of the medical knowledge. This article takes in consideration two main issues. First, it examines the contradictions of medico-psychiatric diagnostic apparatus (diagnostic proliferation; the litany of psychological test and scales; the imagined objectivity of categories and methods whose "destiny effects" are evident when they contribute to label marginal and subaltern groups, such as the immigrants), as well as their colonial genealogy when applied to the field of migration. Secondly, the article emphasizes dimensions often forgotten in healing and suffering narratives. The author remembers the value of hope, once we assume it as a practice able to build "new communities of care" (Mattingly), able to resist both to institutional violence and aloneness often present in chronic suffering.
Keywords: Diagnosticismo; medicalizzazione; migrazione; violenza istituzionale; sofferenza cronica; speranza