Securing Democracy: Political Parties and Democratic Consolidation in Southern Europe

By Geoffrey Pridham | Go to book overview

Chapter four

The role of the Italian Communist Party in the consolidation of parliamentary democracy in Italy

Donald Sassoon


Introduction

The establishment of the new democratic framework in post-fascist Italy was achieved largely by the political parties which had led the Resistance. They devised the new institutions and legitimized the new regime, above all by involving in it those sectors of the population which previously had been marginal or absent from political life. Christian Democracy (DC), as heir to the Partito Popolare, had to perform the task of transferring the loyalties of the rural Catholic masses-once disenfranchised by papal opposition to the new unitary Italian state-on to the new liberal-democratic framework. The Italian Communist Party (PCI), heir to the Italian Socialist tradition (or, at least, to its maximalist wing) had to do the same for the working classes.

Hence the Resistance and its component parties demonstrated that Fascism had not destroyed civil society (contrasting perhaps with Portugal, where long authoritarian rule induced political passivity). It was instrumental in mobilizing large popular sectors into politics, an important feature of Italy's transition to democracy. 1 Therefore the subsequent behaviour of these parties in channelling this activity was crucial not only to a successful transition but also to the prospects for democratic consolidation. This period is broadly equivalent to Rustow's 'habituation phase' in democratic transition, where 'both politicians and citizens learn from the successful resolution of some issues to place their faith in the new rules' and 'experience with democratic techniques and competitive recruitment will confirm the politicians in their democratic practices and beliefs'. 2 However, the Italian case is less straightforward than some other cases of the move from transition to consolidation examined in this volume. As Pasquino has noted, controversy over the post-war transition has persisted-not over its achievement and the crucial role of the parties, but over its evaluation especially concerning the defeat of the left in the 1948 election and its consequences. 3 One may therefore say that certain formative influences of transition-above

-84-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Securing Democracy: Political Parties and Democratic Consolidation in Southern Europe
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 227

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.