Mussolini’s Ghost: Post-Fascism and the Remaking of Italy’s Far Right
From Ceyanna Meroniuk
The rise of Giorgia Meloni to power in Italy, the country’ first female prime minister and leader of one of the most far-right parties in the history of the post-fascist Republic, has drawn worldwide concern about the return of Fascism to Italy. But is Giorgia Meloni a Fascist? Does the recent electoral success of far-right parties signal a decisive rejection of liberal democratic norms and of the so-called ‘anti-Fascist paradigm’ that has defined Italian political life and national identity since the fall of Mussolini? Historians Jacopo Pili and Robert Ventresca join Global Fridays to help us historicize the recent resurgence of Italy’s far-right. They examine how the legacy of fascism continues to haunt the country’s governing structures as well as popular memory, but in more complex ways than is commonly understood. Seen through a historical lens, the rise to power of the far-right does not signal a return to fascism so much as the adaptation by far-right leaders like Giorgio Meloni of a coherent if historically flawed narrative of Italy’s post-Fascist history.