Communism and anti-Communism in early Cold War Italy

Language, symbols and myths

Author: Andrea Mariuzzo

The struggle in projects, ideas and symbols between the strongest Communist Party in the West and an anti-Communist and pro-Western government coalition was the most peculiar founding element of the Italian democratic political system after the Second World War.

Until now, most historians have focused their attention on political parties as the only players in the competition for the making of political orientations and civic identities in Italian public opinion. Others have considered Italian political struggle in the 1940s and 1950s in terms of the polarisation between Communism and organised Catholicism, due to the undoubted importance of the Church in Italian culture and social relations.

This book enlarges the view, looking at new aspects and players of the anti-Communist ‘front’. It takes into account the role of cultural associations, newspapers and the popular press in the selection and diffusion of critical judgements and images of Communism, highlighting a dimension that explains the force of anti-Communist opinions in Italy after 1989 and the crisis of traditional parties. The author also places the case of Italian Cold War anti-Communism in an international context for the first time.

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