Ezio Mauro
L'anno del fascismo (The year of fascism)
Feltrinelli, an essay, October 2022, 240 pages

“The fascists popped up a few minutes before two o’clock, protected by the bang of firecrackers in the streets and courtyards, while dancing had resumed after the toast. From inside came the soft notes and innocent verses of Abat-jour, but a gunshot in the street stopped the music. ‘Open up, or it will be worse.’ With a hundred and fifty-one shells on the ground ended the first night of January and began the Italian 1922, the year of fascism.”

In the dark months leading to the dissolution of the liberal state Mussolini, with his tragic and spectacular conception of life, crosses the spirit of the times: politics is reduced to its physical dimension, ritual supplants culture. All around, an empty sky of dull stars, in a crumbling political world unable to read the changing society, dazed by the worldwide echo of the Bolshevik revolution and the contagious suggestion that the myth of Russia radiated from St. Petersburg.

The Italian liberal state seemed exhausted and did not know it, unable to cope with the new social and political phenomena, as if they no longer fit within its ancient categories. The king is alone. It is up to him to fill the institutional scene, Head by the grace of God and the will of the nation of a state that is shattered by failing to fulfill its constitutional commitments, and day after day surrenders to the fascist fury that presses on to supplant him.

Ezio Mauro recounts the decisive year of the fracture between two epochs: after the war, in front of the declining power of the dynasties, there is in Italy the growing, violent impetus of the new fascist movement. Is it already a power?

“1922 seemed a difficult and violent year in a lost country, but instead it was the Italian threshold of dictatorship.”

Ezio Mauro

Ezio Mauro

Ezio Mauro started his career in journalism in 1972 at the newspaper Gazzetta del Popolo in Turin. Then, he became a political reporter in Rome for La Stampa, for which he was also a foreign correspondent, writing stories and conducting investigative reports in the United States. In 1988, he started contributing to the newspaper la Repubblica, writing from Moscow. On June 26, 1990 he re-joined La Stampa, becoming its editor-in-chief two years later. On May 6, 1996 he became the editor-in-chief of la Repubblica. In 2011, he published La felicità della democrazia. Un dialogo, with Gustavo Zagrebelsky, and in 2015 Babel, his dialogue on democracy with Zygmunt Bauman. He has written L’anno del ferro e del fuoco. Cronache di una rivoluzione (2017), L’uomo bianco (2018), Anime prigioniere. Cronache dal muro di Berlino (2019), Liberi dal male (2020), La dannazione (2020), Lo scrittore senza nome (2021)His most recent book is L’anno del fascismo (2022). In 2016 he left his place as editor-in-chief of la Repubblica, but he still contributes to it.





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