Fascist Italy is an informative work which analyzes and brings together the two fundamental aspects of the Fascist Italian experience: its history and its ideology. Author Cristogianni Borsella superbly explains the background of the Fascist movement, revealing in detail its corresponding political nature; this was possible because Borsella has made Benito Mussolini part of the narrative. The reader quickly becomes aware that Fascism is the logical but chaotic brainchild of Mussolini himself—a restless man in search of messianic visions to allay his own insecurities and of those of his nation. Borsella exposes other individuals who were instrumental in forming the ideological foundations of Fascism, namely Sorel, Vilfredo and Gentile. Groups like the syndicalists, interventionists, and neoconservatives influenced Italian politics long before there were American counterparts. The book’s greatest strength may show how the extreme Left played vital roles in shaping Fascism, as Mussolini himself had been a devout Socialist for many years before attaining power. Vividly trumpeted as a progressive state ideology, Fascism left in its wake a destructive, repressive legacy of a dictatorship. In the final chapters, Borsella compares the modern political climate in the United States to that existing in Italy under Fascism. In his final pages, right or wrong, Borsella draws parallels that should force one to reassess the meaning of what it means to be free in today’s America.
Books in English