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Mussolini (The Fascist Political System) Notes

History Notes > Origins and Developments of Authoritarian and Single party states Notes

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Tara

Subba

Mussolini

and

the

Fascist

political

system

(HL)

Mussolini

and

the

Fascists

Political

System


Key

Dates


Date

Event

1925

Vidoni

pact

outlawed

independent

trade

unions

1926

Granted

the

right

to

issue

decrees

without

parliament

consent


Banned

internal

argument

-

parliament

lost

the

right

to

debate

proposed

laws

or


criticize

Fascist

policies


Opposition

newspapers

surprised


Begin

cult

of

personality

1928

1929

1939

Mussolini

controlled

all

appointments

in

Fascist

party

Lateran

Agreement

-

improvements

between

the

church

and

Fascism

Parliament

replaced

by

the

chamber

of

Fasces

and

Corporations

Tara

Subba

Mussolini

and

the

Fascist

political

system

(HL)

|

Mussolini's

aim:

Personal

Dictatorship

|

1926
Mussolini

had

achieved

his

ambition

of

becoming

dictator

of

Italy.

* He

could

make

laws

by

issuing

decrees.

* Parliament

was

under

his

full

control

-

no

longer

a

forum

for

debate

but

simply

a

theatre

in


which

his

decisions

could

be

applauded

by

Fascist

supporters

and

sympathizers.

* With

Liberals

and

Popolari

divided

and

leaderless,

and

the

Socialists

under

constant

physical


attack,

there

was

no

strong

political

opposition.

* Providing

that

the

King

remained

in

fear

and

awe

of

the

Fascist

leader,

Mussolini

need

not


worry

about

the

armed

forces,

as

they

were

very

unlikely

to

break

their

pledge

of

loyalty

to


the

monarch.


With

his

position

secure,

Mussolini

now

set

out

to

create

his

Fascist

state.

This

was

to

be

a

personal


dictatorship.

His

goals

were:

* To

maintain

and

increase

his

own

personal

power.

* To

encourage

a

'cult

of

personality'

that

stressed

his

geniuses,

his

power

and

his


indispensability

as

leader

of

the

nation.

* He

attempted

to

consolidate

his

position

by

seeking

a

constructive

working

relationship

with


powerful

interest

groups

(Church,

industrialists

and

the

armed

forces)


Mussolini's

personal

power

took

priority

over

the

desire

to

impost

Fascist

ideas

all

aspects

of

Italian


life.

He

was

determined

that

the

Party

should

be

his

servant

and

not

his

master.

Mussolini

would:

* Decided

what

powers

the

Party

should

possess

* What

Fascist

policy

should

be

and

how

and

when

it

should

be

implemented


Mussolini's

Italy:

*

One

in

which

he

alone

possessed

ultimate

power.

* Interest

groups,

the

old

institutions

of

government

and

the

Fascist

Party

all

competed

against


each

other

for

authority

but

they

looked

to

Mussolini

to

adjudicate

their

disputes

and

to

make


the

final

decisions.

Without

him,

the

government

could

not

function

and

the

regime

would


collapse.

Tara

Subba

Mussolini

and

the

Fascist

political

system

(HL)

|

Propaganda

and

the

Cult

of

Personality

|


Mussolini

was

determined

to

use

propaganda

to

build

up

support

for

his

regime

and

to

deter


opposition.

1926

*

Opposition

newspapers

were

suppressed

and

journalists

and

their

editors

made

aware

that


they

could

be

arrested

if

they

published

anything

derogatory

towards

the

regime.


o Mussolini's

press

office

issued

'official'

versions

of

events

--

newspapers

expected

to


publish

without

question.


o Stressed

Mussolini's

benevolence.


o Quoted

the

opinions

of

foreign

admirers


SS? British

Foreign

secretary

Chamberlain

-

"a

wonderful

make

working

for

the


greatness

of

is

country'.


o Suggested

that

the

Duce

was

flawless

-

"Mussolini

is

always

right"


SS? Political

indoctrination

--

published

and

exaggerated

Fascist

successes.


SS? Portrayed

the

Duce

as

vigorous,

athletic

and

courageous

man.


u? Model

for

all

Italian

males.


u? 'Superhuman'


u? Man

of

culture

-

known

that

he

digested

all

35

volumes

of

the

Italia


Encyclopedia

and

classics

of

Shakespearean

literature.


u? Recorded

spectacles,

parades

and

propaganda

to

keep

Fascist

interest


and

secure

people's

allegiance

to

Fascism.

*

Radio

and

cinema

were

also

tools

for

Fascist

propaganda;


o Only

40,000

radios

in

the

whole

of

Italy

in

the

mid

1920's.

But

from

1924,

the

radio


network

was

run

by

the

state.


o News

bulletins

continually

praised

Mussolini

and

broadcast

his

speeches

in

full.


o Radio's

were

given

to

schools

*

Party

attempted

ensured

that

those

living

in

total

areas

could

at

least

listen

to

communal


radios

in

their

villages.


1930's


The

sheer

volume

of

propaganda

stressing

Mussolini's

power

and

genius

deterred

political

opposition.

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