The Struggle for Modernity: Nationalism, Futurism, and Fascism

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Greenwood Publishing Group, 2003 - Political Science - 201 pages

During the 20th century, Italy experienced some regrettable political developments. It was the first European nation after World War I in which a mass militia-party of revolutionary nationalism achieved power and abolished parliamentary democracy with the goal of building a totalitarian state. It was also the first in Europe to institutionalize the sacralization of politics and to celebrate officially the cult of the leader as a demi-God. These achievements were not accidents. Since the beginning of the 20th century, Italian nationalist movements, from the national radicalism of La Voce to futurist nationalism and fascism, fostered one of the strongest waves of European right-wing radicalism.

The confrontation between nationalism and modernity is one of the main keys to understanding to the permutations of Italian radical nationalism from modernist avant-gardes up to the fascist regime. This book analyzes the ideological undercurrents and cultural myths that unite all these movements. Looking at Italian nationalism from its risorgimento roots to the neo-fascist heritage, Gentile considers the relationship between myth and organization in the making of the fascist state, the role of the party, the liturgy of mass politics in Italy, the fascist organizations abroad, and the attitude of fascist culture toward the United States.


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Italian Nationalism and Modernity
The Struggle for Modernity Echoes of the Dreyfus Affair in Italian Political Culture 18981912
Conflicting Modernisms La Voce against Futurism
The Conquest of Modernity From Modernist Nationalism to Fascism
Myth and Organization The Rationale of Fascist Mass Politics
The Problem of the Party in Italian Fascism
The Theatre of Politics in Fascist Italy
Mussolinis Charisma
I Fasci Italiani allEstero The Foreign Policy of the Fascist Party
Impending Modernity Fascism and the Ambivalent Image of the United States
The End of a Myth

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About the author (2003)

EMILIO GENTILE is a contemporary historian of international reputation and a leading scholar of Fascism, totalitarianism, and political religions. He is the author of twelve books, and his major works and articles have been translated into English, French, German, Spanish and Portuguese. He is co-editor of Totalitarian Movements and Political Religions and is on the editorial boards of The Journal of Contemporary History and Modernism/Modernity. He currently teaches in the Department of Political Studies at the University of Rome.

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