Aims: The aims are to provide students with an understanding of the origins, success and collapse of fascism in the context of European and international developments; to show how a crisis of the Italian state developed after the First World War; to consider and compare different interpretations of the fascist dictatorship.
By the end of this unit students should be familiar with the main developments in Italian history 1914-1945 and have enhanced their critical and analytical skills through discussion of competing analyses of Italian fascism.
Skills in critical analysis, conceptual thinking, precision in the use of written and spoken language, exercise of independent judgement, reasoned argument, teamwork and the planning/¬conduct/¬reporting of non-quantitative research are taught and assessed in this unit. Skills in effective learning are developed in this unit.
Italy in the First World War. The 'biennio rosso' and the origins of fascism. Mussolini's rise to power. The creation of a fascist dictatorship. Fascism and national identity. Church and State under fascism. Economic crisis and fascist economic policies. Foreign policy. The alliance with Hitler. Italy in the Second World War. The fall of Mussolini, the armistice and the Resistance movement. Interpretations of fascism.