The Seizure of Power: Fascism in Italy, 1919-1929

The Seizure of Power: Fascism in Italy, 1919-1929

The Seizure of Power: Fascism in Italy, 1919-1929

The Seizure of Power: Fascism in Italy, 1919-1929

Synopsis

"This volume is a study of Fascism in its country of origin, Italy. It describes the impact of a new type of political movement on Italian government and society. The Fascist seizure of power did not begin or end with Mussolini's famous March on Rome in 1922; it was achieved rather by gradual subversion of the liberal order, which involved not only the destruction of all political opposition but also the creation of new institutions designed to control economic and cultural life. A classic work of wide-ranging scholarship, this book is here republished with a new preface by the author and will be essential reading for all students of Fascism and international history."

Excerpt

This book is the product of a number of years' research in Italy. I was impelled to undertake the study by curiosity about how Fascism could have first arisen and succeeded in Italy and about the nature and extent of its influence on Italian society. It seemed to me that the period from 1922-9 had been less well studied than the preceding period and that, for comprehensible moral reasons, the study of the opposition to Fascism had progressed further than the study of Fascism itself. In the last few years this situation has changed, and there is now a great volume of work in Italian, of which I have tried to take account. Nevertheless, this book, except for the introductory section, is largely based on original research in the State archives, in newspaper files and in contemporary writings.

This work has been made possible by the assistance of a number of institutions and persons, whose help I gratefully acknowledge. My greatest debt is to the Warden and Fellows of both All Souls and St Antony's College, Oxford, who supported me during the research and writing of this book. In addition, I am especially indebted to the former Warden of St Antony's, Mr F.W. Deakin, for his expert knowledge and suggestions. The friendship, advice and criticism of Dr Roberto Vivarelli has been of inestimable value to me during the whole period of my research. My thanks are due to the Italian institutions which have aided my researches. First and foremost, I must thank Dr Costanzo Casucci and the other archivists of the Archivio Centrale dello Stato for their knowledge, patience and good will, which alone made my researches possible. My thanks are also due to the staff of the Biblioteca Nazionale in Florence; to the Istituto per la Storia della Resistenza in Toscana; the Archivio di Stato of Bologna; the Istituto Gramsci of Rome, and the Library of the Chamber of Deputies.

In addition my warmest thanks are due to the following individuals: Professor Alberto Aquarone, Professor Gaetano Arfe, Senator Eugenio Artom, Professor Giampiero Carocci, Professor Renzo De Felice, Professor Piero Melograni, Dr Gian Giacomo Migone, Dr Renato Mieli, Dr Claudio Pavone, Signorina Nina Ruffini, Dr Salvatore Sechi and Professor Paolo

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