Rethinking the Italian liberal state
Carter, Nick. (2011) Rethinking the Italian liberal state. Bulletin of Italian Politics. 3(2), pp. 225-245.
This article explores historians’ changing and competing interpretations of the liberal Italian state, its governing class, the bourgeoisie, and of the performance of – and state’s role in – the Italian economy, 1861-1915. Post-war accounts of the period commonly split along two lines: those that emphasised the peculiarities and shortcomings of the liberal state and held the state (and the bourgeoisie) responsible for Italy’s failings and for Fascism, and those that stressed Italy’s progress under liberalism and denied or played down the link between liberal and Fascist Italy. In recent decades, however, ‘revisionist’ interpretations of liberal Italy have reframed the debate. By looking at liberal Italy ‘on its own terms’ (i.e. rather than in relation to Fascism) and by placing the Italian experience within the broader European context, revisionism has helped to ‘normalise’ the Italian state and bourgeoisie. Similarly, studies since the 1990s of the liberal Italian economy have generally presented a more positive picture of growth, development and state intervention than traditionally has been the case.
|Keywords||liberal Italy; historiography; liberal state; Italian bourgeoisie; liberal economy|
|Journal||Bulletin of Italian Politics|
|Journal citation||3 (2), pp. 225-245|
|Web address (URL)||http://www.gla.ac.uk/media/media_224799_en.pdf|
|Research or scholarly||Research|
|Research Group||School of Arts|
File Access Level
|Place of publication||United Kingdom|
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