Electing Fascism: The German Referendum of 1934

Hitler used the referendum to legitimize his move to take the title Führer und Reichskanzler (Führer and Chancellor). Introduction and Background A referendum on merging the posts of Chancellor and President was held in Germany on 19 August 1934,[1] seventeen days after the death of President Paul von Hindenburg. The leadership of Nazi Germany sought[…]

Fin De Siècle and the Rise of Fascism

The fin-de-siècle generation condemned the rationalistic individualism of liberal society and the dissolution of social links in bourgeois society. Defining Fascism and Its Early History Overview Fascism is a form of radical authoritarian nationalism that came to prominence in early 20th-century Europe. The first fascist movements emerged in Italy during World War I, then spread[…]

How Hitler Became Germany’s Fascist Führer

Hitler took advantage of severe conditions at the time that were extremely favorable for the fast growth of his monstrous movement. Introduction In 1934, after the death of German President Paul von Hindenburg, Chancellor Adolf Hitler became the absolute dictator of Germany under the title Fuhrer or “Leader”. He ruled Germany with an iron fist[…]

Mussolini’s Rise to Power as Italy’s Fascist Dictator

Mussolini and his Fascists effectively used violence and terror to gain control. Introduction In 1922, Benito Mussolini (Il Duce) came to power as the prime minister of Italy and the leader of the National Fascist Party. At first, he ruled democratically and constitutionally, but in 1925, he turned Italy into a one-party, totalitarian state, and[…]

The Rise and Fall of Fascism in Italy

It’s final collapse was brought about by Allied military victories plus the open rebellion of the people. By Dr. Mario EinaudiLate Professor of GovernmentCornell University Introduction From his birth in 1883 to the day of his death in 1945 Benito Mussolini was many things to many men. Son of a blacksmith of radical persuasion, Mussolini[…]

Fascism: A Brief History of Its Origins and Practice

Fascism is a far-right theory of government that opposes the political philosophies of the Englightenment and the 19th century. Definition and Beliefs Fascism is an ultranationalist, authoritarian political philosophy. It combines elements of nationalism, militarism, economic self-sufficiency, and totalitarianism. It opposes communism, socialism, pluralism, individual rights and equality, and democratic government. Fascism places the importance[…]

German Resistance to the Nazi Regime, 1933-1945

The German Resistance movement consisted of several disparate strands that were ultimately unable to bring Hitler down. Introduction The German Resistance refers to those individuals and groups in Nazi Germany who opposed the regime of Adolf Hitler between 1933 and 1945. Some of these engaged in active plans to remove Hitler from power and overthrow[…]

Fascismo: Italian Fascism under Benito Mussolini, 1922-1943

Fascism in Italy was strongly identified with the cult of Mussolini and with the idea, even with the idolization, of the “state.” Introduction Italian Fascism (in Italian, fascismo) was the authoritarian political movement which ruled Italy from 1922 to 1943 under the leadership of Benito Mussolini. German Nazism, under Adolf Hitler, was inspired by Italian[…]

A History and Description of Fascism

Fascists promote a type of national unity that is usually based on (but not limited to) ethnic, cultural, national, racial, and/or religious attributes. Introduction Fascism is a term used to describe authoritarian nationalist political ideologies or mass movements that are concerned with notions of cultural decline or decadence and seek to achieve a millenarian national[…]

5 Dictators of the 20th Century You Didn’t Learn About in History Class

A few people have had the luxury of enjoying representative governments in human history. Most of the dictators may have fallen short of the likes of Stalin or Hitler in regard to the cruelty to the people, however, history is rife with war criminals, oppressors, morally complacent individuals, and sociopaths who were elected as government[…]

Benito Mussolini’s Rise to Power in Fascist Italy

The ideological basis for fascism came from a number of sources. Formation of the National Fascist Party By the time he returned from service in the Allied forces of World War I, very little remained of Mussolini the socialist. Indeed, he was now convinced that socialism as a doctrine had largely been a failure. In 1917 Mussolini[…]

The Fall of Mussolini

By Dr. Christopher DugganHistorian The announcement on the radio later that evening that the ‘Duce’ had fallen brought crowds pouring into the streets and piazzas. Joy was mixed with anger. Photographs of Mussolini were tossed from windows; symbols of the fascist party were hacked off buildings; and pavements everywhere were littered with party insignia torn[…]

The Politics of Aesthetics: Mussolini and Fascist Italy

Power has forever been entwined with a symbolic apparatus in charge of representing it. Power has forever been entwined with a symbolic apparatus in charge of representing it.  From Louis the XIV in France to Queen Victoria in England, images and rituals have served to strengthen people’s connections to governing institutions; symbols and rites make[…]

After 100 Years, Mussolini’s Fascist Party Is a Reminder of Freedom’s Fragility

It was 100 years ago this month that Benito Mussolini created the fascist party in Italy. Today, his life offers cautionary lessons for contemporary politics. One hundred years ago, in March 1919, Benito Mussolini created the fascist party in Italy. For more than two decades, when he came to be known as “Il Duce,” or “the leader,”[…]